Department of Physical Therapy Student Theses, Dissertations and Capstones

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Physical Therapy

Copyright Statement

All rights reserved. This publication is intended for use solely by faculty, students, and staff of Nova Southeastern University. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, now known or later developed, including but not limited to photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the author or the publisher.

Department

College of Health Care Sciences - Physical Therapy Department

First Advisor

Josh Cleland

Publication Date / Copyright Date

2019

Publisher

Nova Southeastern University

Abstract

Background: The effect of trigger point dry needling (TDN) on myofascial trigger points (MTP) in Achilles tendinopathy are unknown. Objectives: To determine the feasibility of a large randomized controlled trial (RCT) to compare the effects of TDN to exercise in a patient population with Achilles tendinopathy. Methods: This single-factor, pretest-posttest control group design included 22 subjects between the ages of 24 and 65 years with Achilles tendinopathy. Subjects were randomly assigned to either a control group (MT+Ex) or experimental group (TDN+MT+Ex). Subjects in both groups completed 8 physical therapy treatment sessions over 4 weeks. The intervention for the TDN+MT+Ex group included TDN to MTPs in the gastrocnemius, soleus or tibialis posterior each session while the same soft tissue mobilization and exercise program was conducted in both groups. Results: Within group analysis was performed for each group at 4 week and 90 day follow up. Significant improvement (p < .05) was achieved for FAAM, NPRS, pain pressure threshold and strength in both groups at 4 weeks and 90 days. The GROC was significant for MT + Ex at 90 days. The MCID for the FAAM, GROC were surpassed in both groups at 4 weeks and 90 days. NPRS surpassed the MCID for the MT + Ex group at 4 weeks. Conclusion: A large RCT to investigate the effects of TDN on MTP in Achilles tendinopathy is feasible with modifications. Recommendations: Special considerations for data collection sites should be given to the health care system, insurance payor, and financial burden to subjects.

Disciplines

Physical Therapy

Keywords

Health and environmental sciences, Achilles, Dry needling, Tendinopathy, Trigger point

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