Effectiveness of Dry Needling in the Management of Spasticity in Patients Post Stroke.

Effectiveness of Dry Needling in the Management of Spasticity in Patients Post Stroke.

J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis. 2020 Nov;29(11):105236

Authors: Núñez-Cortés R, Cruz-Montecinos C, Latorre-García R, Pérez-Alenda S, Torres-Castro R

Abstract
OBJECTIVE: To determine the effectiveness of the dry needling technique (DNT) in the treatment of spasticity for individuals with stroke.
DESIGN: We reviewed the Embase, Pubmed/MEDLINE, Web of Science and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) databases. We also performed a manual search of the references that are included in the selected articles. Studies included were: i) randomized clinical trials (RCTs); ii) involving patients with a diagnosis of stroke; and iii) using DNT alone or in a multimodal treatment. Muscular spasticity was the primary outcome of the study. The additional outcomes included were: pressure pain sensitivity, range of motion and perception of pain. The analysis of the certainty of the evidence was analyzed using GRADE. The risk of bias of the included studies was assessed with the Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool for Randomized Controlled Trials.
RESULTS: A total of six RCTs with 221 patients were included in this systematic review, where a significant decrease in spasticity was observed in most of the muscles evaluated, though the certainty of the evidence was low. The effects were only evaluated in the short term in all included studies and the sample size was small.
CONCLUSION: These results should be taken with caution because the included studies are few in number and have different comparators. More RCTs are needed to cover aspects of biases found in the literature, in particular the blinding of participants and personnel.

PMID: 33066920 [PubMed – in process]

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