Short-term changes in neck pain, widespread pressure pain sensitivity, and cervical range of motion after the application of trigger point dry needling in patients with acute mechanical neck pain - a randomised clinical trial
Physical therapy is generally the first management option for individuals with incidious-onset mechanical neck pain. Current reasoning suggests that muscle trigger points (TrPs) can be involved in the pain process. The utilisation of trigger point dry needling (TrP-DN) appears effective for pain reduction in individuals with upper quadrant pain syndromes – however, few studies have investigated the application in individuals with acute mechanical neck pain. The current study aims to determine the effects of TrP-DN in this demographic with active TrPs in the upper trapezius.
Seventeen patients randomly underwent either a single session of TrP-DN or no intervention (control). The intervention group experienced greater reductions in neck pain, larger increases in pain-pressure thresholds (PPTs), and further increases in cervical range of motion both at 10-minutes and 1-week post-intervention.
While these results suggest favourable short-term clinical outcomes following the implementation of TrP-DN in acute mechanical neck pain, larger scale multi-center clinical trials with longer follow-ups are needed to confirm these findings. > From: Mejuto-Vázquez et al., J Orthop Sports Phys Ther (2014) (Epub ahead of print). All rights reserved to the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy.
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