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The Thorax – An integrated approach

Today we understand that the thorax is part of many integrated and interdependent systems, including the musculoskeletal, neurological, respiratory, cardiovascular, digestive, and urogynecological systems. As such, it should not be considered in isolation from the rest of the body, but rather in relation to it. This well-organized book begins with an in-depth analysis of the anatomy of the thoracic cage including a guide to surface anatomy palpation. This book presents a unique paradigm of evaluation and treatment (The Integrated Systems Model) that has the potential to transform our profession. The existing science and extensive clinical knowledge are melded into a guide for others to better understand the human body, and how to manage their patient’s physical complaints. This book is not only about the thoracic cage, but one that explores the interconnections between the thoracic cage and the rest of the body.


This clinical textbook will update the reader on the relevant anatomy, known biomechanics, clinical assessment, musculoskeletal conditions and treatment of the thorax and how these relate to the function of the whole body. An integrated biopsychosocial model (the Integrated Systems Model – ISM) will be highlighted in this text and used as a foundation for clinicians to organize their knowledge from multiple sources. The text emphasizes the current suggestion from the evidence that treatment be individualized and that clinical reasoning form the basis for treatment decisions.

Richly illustrated with 3D-rendered colour anatomical drawings, and over 250 clinical photographs, The Thorax: An integrated approach is the definitive manual on the thorax for all bodyworkers helping patients improve mobility and control of the trunk.

View sample pages from Chapter 3 – Assessment of the thorax and its relationship to the whole body here.

Read Gregory S Johnson’s enthusiastic and illuminating foreword to The Thorax: An integrated approach here.

‘Every major profession, to progress and define itself, must have visionaries who propel the present state of knowledge to a new level. Diane Lee is one of those visionaries. This book presents a unique paradigm of evaluation and treatment (The Integrated Systems Model) that has the potential to transform our profession.’  Gregory S Johnson, 2018

Diane Lee is an orthopaedic musculoskeletal physiotherapist (FCAMT) and designated as a Clinical Specialist in Women’s Health by the Canadian Physiotherapy Association.  She has long been interested in the biomechanics of the thorax and the impact of sub-optimal thoracic alignment, mobility and control in multiple conditions throughout the whole body. She has written several chapters on both the pelvis and the thorax as well as published two peer-reviewed articles (1993, 2015 JMMT) on her biomechanical model of the thorax. She self-published two books on the thorax (Manual Therapy for the Thorax 1994 and The Thorax – An Integrated Approach 2003), which are both no longer available and is excited to collaborate with Handspring Publishing on this new text.  The intent is to describe a biopsychosocial approach that incorporates the novel, updated biomechanical model of the thorax to facilitate wise decisions for clinicians working with musculoskeletal, urogynecological and respiratory conditions.


SKU: BK-THORAX Categories: , ,