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April 10 2013

Posture Provides Clue for Future Disability


The shape of an individual's spinal column may predict his or her risk for nursing home admission or need of home assistance in old age, according to a new article published online in the Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences.

A team of researchers based in Japan discovered that the trunk angle of inclination -- the angle between the true vertical and a straight line from the first thoracic vertebra to the first sacral vertebra (view image) -- is associated with becoming dependent on help for activities of daily living (ADL). These activities include such basic self-care tasks as bathing, feeding, toileting, maintaining continence, dressing, and transferring in or out of a bed or chair.

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