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Is Dry Needling Treatment an Extra Contribution to Conventional Treatment for Hemiplegic Shoulder Pain? A Prospective, Randomized Controlled Study

Med Acupunct. 2023 Oct 1;35(5):236-245. doi: 10.1089/acu.2023.0060. Epub 2023 Oct 17.


OBJECTIVE: This research was conducted to evaluate the effect of adding dry needling (DN) treatment to conventional rehabilitation for pain, range of motion (ROM), and functionality in patients with hemiplegic shoulder pain (HSP).

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Patients with HSP (n = 38) were divided into 2 groups. A multimodal rehabilitation protocol, including physical therapy and exercise treatments, was given to both groups (5 sessions per week for 15 sessions). In addition to this rehabilitation, 3 sessions of DN therapy were given to one of the 2 groups. Measurements were a visual analogue scale; ROM; and 2 other scales (Quick Disability of the Arm, Shoulder, Hand; and the Fugl-Meyer Assessment Upper Extremity). Evaluations were made before, after, and at the third month after treatment.

RESULTS: While a statistically significant improvement was seen in both groups in all parameters after their treatments, a statistical superiority was found in the conventional treatment+DN group (P < 0.05). However, the differences were not greater than the minimal clinically important difference values (MCID). At the 3rd month follow-up, there was no difference in pain and functionality parameters between the groups, while flexion and abduction measurements were higher in the conventional treatment+DN group (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS: Adding DN treatment to conventional rehabilitation did not show any difference except in some joint ROM measurements in the subacute time. Although the changes found were statistically significant, they were not clinically significant as they did not reach MCID values.This study was registered prospectively at (ref. no: NCT04790071).

PMID:37900876 | PMC:PMC10606952 | DOI:10.1089/acu.2023.0060


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