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Efficacy of kinesio taping in treatment of shoulder pain and disability: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

Published:December 09, 2019DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.physio.2019.12.001

      Abstract

      Background

      Kinesio tape is an elastic therapeutic tape used for treating sports injuries and various other disorders. A systematic review and network meta-analysis approach was used to synthesise all related evidence on the clinical effectiveness of kinesio taping for the treatment of shoulder pain.

      Methods

      A literature search was performed using 10 major databases. Randomised clinical trials reporting usage of kinesio taping for shoulder pain have been included. Quality and risk of bias were assessed using the Cochrane Collaboration's quality assessment tool. Meta-analysis was conducted to calculate standardised mean differences and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CI). The corresponding 95% CI of pooled effect size were calculated using a fixed-effects or random-effects model based on the level of heterogeneity. In addition, meta-regression was used to assess the influence of underlying shoulder disease on the efficacy of kinesio taping.

      Results

      This systematic review and meta-analysis included 12 studies, with a total of 555 participants. Pairwise comparisons inferred that kinesio taping only showed significant improvement of shoulder pain and disability when combined with exercise. However, kinesio taping did not produce better results than placebo or treatment with steroids. The duration of treatment and underlying shoulder pathology did not influence the efficacy of kinesio taping.

      Conclusion

      There is insufficient evidence to support the use of kinesio taping in clinical practice as a treatment for shoulder pain. However, there is limited evidence of its benefit as a complementary treatment in shoulder pain syndromes.

      Clinical trial registration number

      PROSPERO CRD42017065881.

      Keywords

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