The efficacy of therapeutic faradic stimulation in patients with myofascial pain syndrome of the trapezius and levator scapula musculature
Bedell-Sivright, Hayley Anne
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The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of Therapeutic Faradic Stimulation in patients with Myofascial Pain Syndrome of theTrapezius and Levator Scapula musculature. This study was a quantitative pilot placebo controlled clinical trial. The sample size used was 60 patients selected from the Durban Metropolitan Area. Only patients between the ages of 30 and 50, who were office workers and were diagnosed with active trigger points in either the Trapezius and/or the Levator Scapula muscles were accepted into this study. The sample was divided into 3 groups of 20. One group received Faradic Stimulation in the form of the Transeva, another group received Placebo Transeva and the third group received Pulsed Ultrasound. Each patient received 2 research treatments with a maximum of 72 hours between treatment 1 and 2, and the third free Chiropractic treatment being a week later. Data (both subjective and objective) were obtained from the patients at the first and second consultations, prior to treatments and at the third follow up before treatment. Subjective data were obtained with the Short form McGill pain questionnaire, the Numerical Pain Rating Scale and the CMCC Neck Disability Index. Objective data were obtained from the Pressure Algometer and the CROM Cervical Range of Motion Instrument. Statistical Analysis of the data was conducted using the SPSS (version 9) software suite. This Statistical software program was manufactured by SPSS Inc, 444N. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois, USA. Various Descriptive and Inferential Statistical techniques were used. The Descriptive procedures used were various tables and graphs and a few summary statistics including but not limited to means, proportions and percentages. Inferential Statistics included iv various Hypothesis testing techniques. Due to the size of our samples, namely 20 in each group, non-parametric Statistical Tests were used. All the tests were set at type 1 error at 5%, or mentioned differently = 0.05. If our p value as reported was less than 0.05 we declared a significant result and our Null Hypothesis was rejected. Evaluation of the statistical analyses revealed significant improvements with regards to subjective and objective data for mostly the Attenuated Faradic Treatment (Transeva) group. Although significant Placebo and Ultrasound effects were obtained initially after the first treatment, the Transeva group showed more favourable results between consultations two and three, giving a good indication of the progression of the treatment regimen. Comparison between groups showed a significant difference with regards to CMCC Neck Disability Index scores, NPRS 101 questionnaires, CROM extension and right lateral flexion readings and Algometer readings. It was concluded that the Transeva is an effective form of treatment for the active trigger points of Myofascial Pain Syndrome of the Trapezius and Levator Scapula musculature in terms of both subjective and objective clinical findings. Suggestions were made to double-blind further studies as this will aid in reducing researcher bias toward a favoured treatment protocol. This study and observations made by the author with respect to Myofascial Transeva treatment are hoped to contribute to the limited literature available on this modality.