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Comparison of the effects of fluori-methane, ethyl chloride, and a passive stretch on the elongation of the trapezius muscle

19 May 1991


In this study nineteen normal subjects, ten male and nine females, participated in three different treatments, Ethyl Chloride, Fluori-Methane (both combined with a passive stretch), or a passive stretch by itself in order to determine which treatment would be more effective in increasing the elongation of a tight, right trapezius muscle. The effectiveness of these treatments was determined by measuring the active range of motion (AROM) of the head into left lateral flexion before and after each treatment was applied. A passive rom (PROM) measurement was also taken directly after each treatment application in order to compare the treatment effects on a passive ROM. The subject's head ROM was measured with a pendulum goniometer while the shoulders were stabilized in a sitting position. Subjects received each of the three treatments on three different days. The results of the mean differences in the AROM measurements, and the PROM measurements indicated that one vapo-coolant spray produced a greater increase than the other, and also that the two vapo-coolant treatments produced a greater increase in AROM and PROM of the head into left lateral flexion than did the passive stretch by itself. However, statistical analysis determined that the differences were not significant enough at p < .05 to hold true that the vapo-coolant sprays (combined with a passive stretch) are more effective than a passive stretch by itself in increasing the elongation of a tight muscle.


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