The effect of dry needling and treadmill running on inducing pathological changes in rat Achilles tendon.

The effect of dry needling and treadmill running on inducing pathological changes in rat Achilles tendon.

Connect Tissue Res. 2015 Jun 15;:1-17

Authors: Kim BS, Joo YC, Choi BH, Kim KH, Kang JS, Park SR

Abstract
Achilles tendinopathy is a common degenerative condition without a definitive treatment. An adequate chronic animal model of Achilles tendinopathy has not yet been developed. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the individual and combined effects of dry needling and treadmill running on the Achilles tendon of rats. Percutaneous dry needling, designed to physically replicate microrupture of collagen fibers in overloaded tendons, was performed on the right Achilles tendon of 80 Sprague-Dawley rats. The rats were randomly divided into two groups: a treadmill group, which included rats that underwent daily uphill treadmill running (n = 40), and a cage group, which included rats that could move freely within their cages (n = 40). At the end of weeks 1 and 4, 20 rats from each group were sacrificed, and bilateral Achilles tendons were collected. The harvested tendons were subjected to mechanical testing and histological analysis. Dry needling induced histological and mechanical changes in the Achilles tendons at week 1, and the changes persisted at week 4. The needled Achilles tendons of the treadmill group tended to show more severe histological and mechanical changes than those of the cage group, although these differences were not statistically significant. Dry needling combined with free cage activity or treadmill running produced tendinopathy-like changes in rat Achilles tendons up to 4 weeks after injury. Dry needling is an easy procedure with a short induction period and a high success rate, suggesting it may have relevance in the design of an Achilles tendinopathy model.

PMID: 26076317 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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