While being a male and increased FHP had a positive effect on prominent exostosis, paradoxically, increase in age was linked to a decrease in enthesophyte size.
Our latter findings provide a conundrum, as the frequency and severity of degenerative skeletal features in humans are associated typically with aging.
These images also include the enthesophyte measurements used throughout this study.
Sample radiographic assessment of forward head protraction (FHP).
Robust and pronounced cranial features such as cranial thickness, supraorbital torus, a sagittal keel and occipital torus are the hallmarks of early hominin skulls, characteristics that are discussed extensively in the anthropological literature in association with early hominin evolution.
With evolutionary changes, such as perfection of bipedalism, cranial balance and equilibrium, and a reduction in the need for powerful mastication has resulted in reduced stress exerted on the skull by muscle tendons and ligaments.
Our findings and the literature provide evidence that mechanical load plays a vital role in the development and maintenance of the enthesis (insertion) and draws a direct link between aberrant loading of the enthesis and related pathologies.
We hypothesize EEOP may be linked to sustained aberrant postures associated with the emergence and extensive use of hand-held contemporary technologies, such as smartphones and tablets.
Our findings contrast directly with reports highlighting the increase in prevalence of degenerative musculoskeletal features in general, and the magnitude of enthesophytes in particular, in aging populations.
Our results suggest that the younger age group in our study have experienced postural loads that are atypical throughout the other tested age groups.