Lower Crossed Syndrome is the term for a particular pattern of muscular imbalance in the lower body, says Dr Ashwani Maichand, who has had a lot of success in performing complicated surgeries in the recent times. The most common result of lower crossed syndrome is specific postural changes, resulting in a slumped posture with your pelvis tilting forward, and the curve of your lower back increasing.
Lower crossed syndrome is characterized by tightness of the thoraco-lumbar extensors in the lower back, rectus femoris in the front of thigh and the iliopsoas that passes from the low back to the front of hip. This pattern of tightness is reflected by weakness of the abdominal muscles says Dr Maichand. The pattern of imbalance creates joint dysfunctional at particular points within the spine. Like the L4-l5, L5-S1 segments and SI joints of the low back and the hip joint.
There are several factors involved in the development of lower-crossed syndrome, one of those is thought to be a previous injury to the joints, ligaments or muscles in the low back, pelvis or hip that doesn’t resolve completely, and leaves certain muscles tight and short. This shortening and tightening of the muscles can also occur from repetitive activities or with bad posture. Poor core abdominal muscles often leave the lower back and pelvis less supported, and more likely to develop muscular imbalances, reveals Dr Ashwani Maichand.
The most common result of lower crossed syndrome is specific postural changes. However, if left, these postural changes can be a contributing factor to injury development and recurrence. Facet joint strains, as well as pelvic and hip dysfunction are all likely conditioned that may develop due to the altered muscle balance. The specific postural changes noticed include anterior pelvic tilt where the pelvis overly tilts forward, increased lumbar lordosis (the spinal curve of your lower back), lateral lumbar shift, lateral leg rotation (outward rotation), and knee hyperextension.
Your doctor will be able to diagnose you by listening to your history, looking at your posture and examining you. According to Dr Maichand, the doctor will look at your posture in detail and may line you side on against a plum line to measure how altered your posture has become. The examination will consist of muscle palpation and stretching to locate the short and tight muscles and muscle testing to determine the weaker muscle groups. Your doctor will also look at the movement of all of the surrounding joints to check for underlying or causative factors. No X-rays or any further investigations are needed to confirm the diagnosis.
Short term treatment will focus on restoring the mobility of your joints though joint manipulation and relaxing the overly tight muscles with massage. Treatment alone will not be enough to reverse the muscular imbalance therefore your doctor will also prescribe you with exercises. Specifically mobility stretches for the tight muscle in your lower back and thighs. Dr Ashwani Maichand says that in the long term, it is important that you maintain a good working posture to avoid recurrence.