Background: Latent trigger points in the upper trapezius muscle may disrupt muscle movement patterns and cause problems such as cramping and decreased muscle strength. Because latent trigger points may spontaneously become active trigger points, they should be addressed and treated to prevent further problems. In this study we compared the short-term effect of kinesiotaping versus friction massage on latent trigger points in the upper trapezius muscle.
Methods: Fifty-eight male students enrolled with a stratified sampling method participated in this single-blind randomized clinical trial (Registration ID: IRCT2016080126674N3) in 2016. Pressure pain threshold was recorded with a pressure algometer and grip strength was recorded with a Collin dynamometer. The participants were randomly assigned to two different treatment groups: kinesiotape or friction massage. Friction massage was performed daily for 3 sessions and kinesiotape was used for 72 h. One hour after the last session of friction massage or removal of the kinesiotape, pressure pain threshold and grip strength were evaluated again.
Results: Pressure pain threshold decreased significantly after both friction massage (2.66 ± 0.89 to 2.25 ± 0.76; P = 0.02) and kinesiotaping (2.00 ± 0.74 to 1.71 ± 0.65; P = 0.01). Grip strength increased significantly after friction massage (40.78 ± 9.55 to 42.17 ± 10.68; P = 0.03); however there was no significant change in the kinesiotape group (39.72 ± 6.42 to 40.65 ± 7.3; P = 0.197). There were no significant differences in pressure pain threshold (2.10 ± 0.11 & 1.87 ± 0.11; P = 0.66) or grip strength (42.17 ± 10.68 & 40.65 ± 7.3; P = 0.53) between the two study groups.
Conclusions: Friction massage and kinesiotaping had identical short-term effects on latent trigger points in the upper trapezius. Three sessions of either of these two interventions did not improve latent trigger points.
Author keywords: Latent-Trigger point — Trapezius — Pain threshold — Grip strength
Author affiliations: Shiraz University of Medical Sciences. School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
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