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Comparison between effects of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization and manual myofascial release on pain, range of motion and function in myofascial pain syndrome of upper trapezius - A randomized controlled trial

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Hong Kong Physiother J. 2024 Jun;44(1):57-67. doi: 10.1142/S1013702524500069. Epub 2023 Oct 26.

Authors:

Shweta Agarwal, Nilima Bedekar, Ashok Shyam, Parag Sancheti

Abstract.

Background: Myofascial pain syndrome (MPS) is a muscle pain disorder characterized by the presence of Myofascial Trigger Point (MTrP) within a taut band, local tenderness, referral of pain to a distant site, restricted range of motion, and autonomic phenomena. The upper trapezius is the muscle most often affected by MTrPs. Manual myofascial release (MFR) and Instrument-Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM) are techniques of soft tissue release that are used to resolve MPS. Fifty six percent of physiotherapists complain of pain in multiple areas due to the massage and manual therapy that they have to perform. Objective: The objective of this study is to find whether IASTM is better than manual MFR in treating patients with MPS in upper trapezius. Methods: This study was a single-blinded randomized controlled trial that included 31 participants, both males and females between the age groups of 18-50 years. Participants were randomly divided into two groups. Three sessions were given over a period of one week for both groups. Group A received IASTM along with conventional treatment and Group B received Manual MFR along with the conventional treatment. The outcome measures evaluated were pain, cervical range of motion, pain pressure threshold (PPT) of trigger points, and the neck disability index. Pre- and post-measurements were taken and the analysis was done. Results: Both the treatment methods significantly reduced pain, improved PPT, range of motion, and function. The effects between the groups showed that IASTM was significantly better than manual MFR to reduce pain. The improvement in PPT, range of motion and function were equal in both the groups. Conclusion: IASTM and manual MFR both are effective individually as treatment procedures for pain, PPT, range of motion, and function. Neither of the treatment options can be considered better that the other. The clinician can decide based on the availability of the instrument, training, patient's preference, and his/her comfort whether which of the two treatment methods should be used. Keywords: Instrument assisted; myofascial; trapezius.

Publication Date: 

2024 Jun

OEID: 

7189

Agarwal, S., Bedekar, N., Shyam, A., Sancheti, P. (2024) 'Comparison between effects of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization and manual myofascial release on pain, range of motion and function in myofascial pain syndrome of upper trapezius - A randomized controlled trial', Hong Kong Physiother J. 2024 Jun;44(1):57-67. doi: 10.1142/S1013702524500069. Epub 2023 Oct 26.

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