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Impact of overweight and obesity on the musculoskeletal system using lumbosacral angles

Authors Onyemaechi N, Anyanwu G, Obikili E, Onwuasoigwe O, Nwankwo O

Received 23 June 2015

Accepted for publication 10 November 2015

Published 10 March 2016 Volume 2016:10 Pages 291—296


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Qian Ding

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Ndubuisi OC Onyemaechi,1,2 Godson E Anyanwu,3 Emmanuel N Obikili,3 Okechukwu Onwuasoigwe,1,2 Okechukwu E Nwankwo1,2

1Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria Enugu Campus, Enugu, Nigeria; 2University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria; 3Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Enugu, Nigeria

Overweight and obesity have been identified as independent risk factors for musculoskeletal disorders. However, the association between obesity and low back pain remains controversial. Little is known about the effects of overweight and obesity on the angles of the lumbosacral spine. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of body mass index (BMI) and waist–hip ratio (WHR) on lumbosacral angles.
Methods: The effects of BMI and WHR on the lumbar lordosis angle (LLA), lumbosacral angle (LSA), sacral inclination angle (°°), and lumbosacral disc angle (LSDA) of 174 overweight and obese subjects (test group) and 126 underweight and normal-weight subjects (control group) were analyzed.
Results: The test group had a significantly higher mean LSA, LLA, sacral inclination angle (SIA), and LSDA (P=0.001). A significant correlation was noted between BMI and LSA (P=0.001), LLA (P=0.001), SIA (P=0.001), and LSDA (P=0.03). There was also a positive relationship between WHR and LSA (P=0.012), LLA (P=0.009), SIA (P=0.02), and LSDA (P=0.01).
Conclusion: There was an increase in lumbosacral angles in individuals with raised BMI and WHR. This may result in biomechanical changes in the lumbosacral spine, which increase the incidence of low back pain.

Keywords: body mass index, waist–hip ratio, lumbosacral angles

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