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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Study of Hyperkyphosis, Exercise and Function (SHEAF) Protocol of a Randomized Controlled Trial of Multimodal Spine-Strengthening Exercise in Older Adults With Hyperkyphosis.

  • Author(s): Katzman, Wendy B
  • Vittinghoff, Eric
  • Kado, Deborah M
  • Schafer, Anne L
  • Wong, Shirley S
  • Gladin, Amy
  • Lane, Nancy E
  • et al.

BACKGROUND:Hyperkyphosis negatively affects health status, physical mobility, and quality of life, but there is no standard protocol for treating people with hyperkyphosis. Treatment options include targeted exercise. OBJECTIVES:This single-site randomized controlled trial (RCT) will determine the efficacy of a targeted multimodal spine-strengthening exercise program, compared with no exercise intervention, among community-dwelling men and women aged ≥60 years. DESIGN:The RCT is a parallel-group design, with 1:1 randomization to exercise and attentional control groups. SETTING:The study will be conducted at one primary site (one academic medical center partnered with one local community medical center). PARTICIPANTS:One hundred men and women, aged ≥60 years, with thoracic kyphosis ≥40 degrees will be randomized. INTERVENTION:The targeted multimodal spine-strengthening exercise intervention includes exercise and postural training delivered by a physical therapist in a group of 10 participants, 3 times a week for 6 months. Controls receive monthly health education meetings in a group of 10 participants and monthly calls from the study coordinator to monitor physical activity and any adverse events. MEASUREMENTS:The primary outcome is change in Cobb angle of kyphosis measured from lateral spine radiographs at baseline and 6 months. Secondary outcomes include change in physical function (assessed with the modified Physical Performance Test, Timed "Up & Go" Test, timed loaded standing, 4-m walk, and Six-Minute Walk Test) and health-related quality of life (assessed with the modified Scoliosis Research Society instrument [SRS-30] self-image domain and Patient Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System [PROMIS] global health and physical function indexes). Additional secondary outcomes include pain, physical activity level, spinal flexion and extension muscle strength, paraspinal extensor muscle density, and adverse events. LIMITATIONS:Blinding of the participants and instructors providing the intervention is not possible. CONCLUSIONS:The efficacy of a high-quality, adequately powered exercise intervention in men and women with kyphosis ≥40 degrees will be evaluated to determine whether targeted multimodal spine-strengthening exercise reduces hyperkyphosis in older adults and improves important secondary outcomes of physical function and health-related quality of life.

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