TN

TN

A while back I mentioned a study that wasn't a study by the British Chiropractor Association that suggested that texting could kill you.

Their completely unsubstantiated theory is that texting, by causing the head to lean forward, would lead to hyper-kyphosis, restrictive lung disease and death. This idea has no basis in the medical literature I can find.

 However, the English need some entrepreneurial sprint because it took

Dr. Dean Fishman, a chiropractor (to) create and trademark the phrase “text neck.”

Hereby referred to as TN.  

He has an Android app ($2.99 and  free version) to let you know if you are using your phone at a dangerous angle. Why might you do this? Because TN, according to the Text-Neck Institute, is

... IS A GLOBAL EPIDEMIC! 'Text Neck' is a world-wide health concern, affecting millions of all ages and from all walks of life. Widespread overuse of handheld mobile technology is resulting in a harmful and dangerous physical condition on the human body, which is known as Text Neck.

that will lead to

Flattening of the Spinal Curve, Onset of Early Arthritis, Spinal Degeneration, Spinal Misalignment, Disc Herniation, Disc Compression, Muscle Damage, Nerve Damage, Loss of Lung Volume Capacity, (and) Gastrointestinal Problems.

Based on almost no data and/or wild extrapolation as the search term "text neck" has no hits on PubMed.

I do not doubt a stiff neck and tension headache may occur from prolonged use of a mobile device in an awkward position. I certainly get a sore neck at the computer, espcially as the screen is not at bifocal level.

But disc herniation? Loss of lung volume? Gastrointestinal problems? Color me skeptical.

He quotes "Roentgenographic findings of the cervical spine in asymptomatic people." as

FHP has been shown to flatten the normal neck curve, resulting in disc compression, damage, and early arthritis.

The abstract from 1986, long before cell phones and texting, concerns normal changes in the neck with aging

The purpose of this study was to determine the incidence and severity of degenerative changes seen on lateral roentgenograms in 200 asymptomatic men and women in five age groups with an age range of 20-65 years and to determine the normal values of cervical lordosis and spinal canal sagittal diameters and their relationship to degenerative changes. It was found that by age 60-65, 95% of the men and 70% of the women had at least one degenerative change on their roentgenograms. A small sagittal diameter correlated with the presence of degenerative changes at the same disc level, and the strongest correlation was with the size of the posterior osteophytes at C5-6 (r = 0.52). Cervical lordosis measurements did not relate to degenerative changes except for subjects over age 50 with moderate or severe intervertebral narrowing. It is important to realize that although roentgenographic abnormalities represent structural changes in the spine, they do not necessarily cause symptoms.

The journal Cephalalgia article, used as a reference,

"the study demonstrated a strong association between an increased forward head posture and decreased respiratory muscle strength in neck patients."

Was in a whopping 24 patients.   Not the most robust of literature to support the concept of TN.

But the biggest concern with making TN a worry to people is the 'solution' to the problem. Somehow I suspect the treatment will be chiropractic manipulation of the neck.

And that could lead to an increase in strokes. Great.

Points of Interest 08/19/2014
Points of Interest: 08/18/2014

Related Posts