Measuring the Cobb Angle
One of the most common angle used in the measure of scoliosis progression is the Cobb angle. The Cobb angle is the measure the frontal deformation looking from the back to the front (or technically, it measures the deformation of the spine at the coronal plane on the anterior-posterior plane.
The Cobb angle is measured by finding from the top, the most displaced vertebra and from the bottom, most displaced vertebra. The two lines are drawn parallel from the ends of these two vertebrae. Two perpendicular lines are drawn from these two lines. The angle at where the two perpendicular lines meet is the Cobb angle. (see figure).
Do note that there is some error in measuring the cobb angle. Typically, expect about ± 5 degrees. Even when the measurement is done by the same person, same variation is expected.
The cobb angle does not measure the amount of rotation of the spine in the other two planes (sagittal and transverse planes). As scoliosis is a 3-dimensional deformation of the spine, it is possible for a visible improvement of the overall spine but not the cobb angle.
Experiencing back pain? Click here to find out more about physiotherapy for back pain relief and how Core Concepts can help
- Variation in Cobb angle measurements in scoliosis, Volume 23, Number 7 / October, 1994
- Reliability of the Cobb angle index derived by traditional and computer assisted methods., Australas Phys Eng Sci Med. 1989 Mar;12(1):16-23.
- How Do You Measure The Cobb Angle?
- Cobb Angle And Scoliosis
- What Can Be Done For Scoliosis?
- Q Angle and Knee Pain
- Manual Therapy – Spinal Vertebra Mobilisation
- Office Ergonomics Or The Lack Of It : Part II
- Knock Knees – Can I Reverse It? (Part 1)
- Shoulder Impingement Exercises Part 2-2: External Rotation in 90° Abduction
- How Do I Know If I Have Scoliosis?
- Shoulder Impingement Exercises Part 2-1: External Rotation in 30° Abduction
- Common Misconceptions about Office Ergonomics
- Posterior Pelvic Pain – Exercises you can do to relieve the pain
- Things You Can Do In Your Flight: 8 Tips for Your Back When Flying
- Anterior Knee Pain in Runners
- Spondylolysis: Symptoms and Cuases
- Rotator Cuff Stabilty For The Shoulder Joint
- 5 Ways To Fix Your Desk-Job Aches
- Lower Back Lumbar Segmental Instability
- Does Bad Posture Lead to Scoliosis?
- Heard about The Anterior Cruciate Ligament. What About The Posterior Cruciate Ligament?