J Bodyw Mov Ther. 2021 Apr;26:94-100. doi: 10.1016/j.jbmt.2020.12.030. Epub 2020 Dec 28.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a combination of dry needling (DN) and muscle energy technique (MET) on pain intensity (PI), pressure pain threshold (PPT) and shoulder active range of motion (ROM) in patients with shoulder impingement syndrome and active trigger points in the infraspinatus muscle.
METHODS: 39 patients, aged 20-50 participated in this study. All the cases were randomly assigned into three groups: group 1 (n = 13) received DN, group 2 (n = 13) received MET, and group 3 (n = 13) received DN & MET. The patients were treated for three sessions in a one-week period with at least a two-day break between sessions.
RESULTS: The results showed a significant improvement in visual analog scale (VAS), PPT and shoulder ROM over time (P < 0.001) in all three groups. There were no significant differences BETWEEN VAS (P = 0.406) PPT (P = 0.293), external rotation(EXT.ROT) (0.476), internal rotation (INT.ROT)(P = 0.476) and extension(EXT) (P = 0.574) ROMs in the three groups; however, DN group was significantly more effective on abduction(ABD) (P = 0.003) and flexion(FLEX) (0.012) ROM compared with other two groups.
CONCLUSION: In line with previous studies, the present study found that the application of DN, MET and combined of these treatment on active trigger points in the infraspinatus muscle of patients with shoulder impingement syndrome helps reduce pain, increase PPT and enhance the shoulder ROM. Both techniques are effective in the treatment of trigger points. Nevertheless, DN is more effective in enhancing the ROM of flexion & abduction.