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Is there really such a thing as an "excessive lordosis"?

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  • Is there really such a thing as an "excessive lordosis"?

    Dear colleagues,

    Recently I found this "time capsule" in the book "Thursday Afternoons"
    by Monica Dickens (a book that describes the life and work of an English
    physician in London in 1939);in the course of a friendly and jocular
    meeting with an old friend the doctor slapped his friend "on his curved
    back" and said:

    "Lordosis, my boy. If you were my patient I'd put you in a plaster cast
    for six months".

    He was probably jesting but it does seem that a lumber lordosis was
    regarded as a deformity in some circles (and not a sign of normal good
    health) and that immobilisation in a plaster cast was a common treatment
    option for back problems. What puzzles me is that I hear that there are
    still some physicians who worry about the effects of a supposedly
    excessive lordosis and that they warn patients that it is a risk factor
    for backache.

    Does anyone know if there any evidence that a lordosis can be excessive?
    And if so is it a risk factor back pain?


    David McFarlane MAppSc (Ergonomics)
    Ergonomist, WorkCover NSW


    M Dickens, (1945), Thursday Afternoons" [Penguin Books, London], p 93.


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