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What is an Inclinometer?

An inclinometer is a medical device used to measure the range of motion of the joint. They are mainly used to measure the passive range of motion and allow the medical practitioner to compare the patient’s relaxed position to the ability to move.? These devices serve the purpose of measuring accurate and precise range of motion in physical and occupational therapy. Physical therapy helps you regain your function and allow you to return to your life of work, recreation, and other routine daily activities. For this purpose, the physical therapist uses an inclinometer to determine whether you have the appropriate range of motion available to accomplish your daily activities without pain.?


The results help the physical therapists and medical practitioners to decide on proper treatment goals. Physical therapists feel that the inclinometers are simple to use and provide useful and reliable information. The inclinometer is also used for tracking the effectiveness of therapy in the course of recovery. Health Products For You brings you a wide variety of medical inclinometers from varied manufacturers like the Baseline and Sammons Preston, to name a few to calculate the ROM of a joint accurately.


Types of Inclinometers for Physical Therapy

There are two different types of inclinometers- manual and digital. The manual inclinometer is also known as a bubble inclinometer. The device has a fluid-filled interface in a circle. The fluid moves with gravity, and the movements are used to read the measurement on a rotating 360-degree face dial. The inclinometers are used most often to measure spine range of motion. Subsequently, dual inclinometers are used for testing the upper and lower spine side by side. One device is placed on the cervical or upper thoracic region and the other is placed in the lumbar region.


How does an Inclinometer work?

  • The inclinometer is placed on the moving body part close to the joint. The patient then performs different motion (ROM) movements, and the result can be read immediately.
  • The physicians take ROM measurements of the injured joint as well as the healthy joint. Normally, the range of motion measurements is taken after an injury to a specific body part. Comparing healthy and injured joints further helps them narrow down the limitations, severity, and degree of the injury incurred.
  • The inclinometer measures a patient's body positioning and stability in certain areas and the slope and tilt of joints. The inclinometer is placed in close contact with the joint, and the therapist zeroes out the inclinometer.?
  • Then the therapist takes the patient through several ROM movements, with readings displayed on the dial of the inclinometer. Inclinometers are sometimes used in pairs to gain additional diagnostic, information during patient evaluations.

How does Inclinometer measure lumbar range of motion?

Various reasons like upper thoracic region, Back Pain, Bad Posture , injury to the spine can reduce muscle strength and range of motion in the spinal movements of flexion, extension, lateral flexion, and rotation. These movements are vital to daily activities. Rehabilitation intervention is needed to restore muscle strength and lost ROM to get back to a normal life free from pain and limited mobility.

Measurement of Lumbar Spine Functional Movement

The inclinometer is a reliable and accurate method of measuring the ROM of the spine. The result helps the therapist plan for the rehabilitation program and other treatment modalities to restore the spinal ROM. Measuring spinal range of motion is also essential in evaluating the effectiveness of the treatments given to the patient.?


Because the spine has motion at both the top and lower segments, two inclinometers are used in conjugation to record the dynamic motion. One inclinometer is placed at the upper part of the spine and the other at the lower spine location. The lower spine measurement value is subtracted from the upper spine value to get the value of the true angle.


To measure the ROM of the spine, the therapist holds the inclinometer in close contact with the patient’s back in the upright position with the dial set to zero. Then, the patient bends forward through the available range of motion with an inclinometer close to the back. The inclinometer dial displays the final reading of the ROM measurement in degrees.


Where to buy Medical Inclinometers online?

We at Health Products For You offer inclinometers with varying features to accurately measure the total range of motion in the body's joints. These products are from leading names in the industry like Fabrication Enterprises, Lafayette Instruments, Graham-Field Health Products ,and many more. Shop with us and get accurate measurements of the spine, cervical vertebra, and extremities.


Research Papers on Inclinometers