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6 active trials for Myofascial Trigger Point Pain

Effects on Neuromuscular Function After Dry Needling in Myofascial Trigger Points in the Gastrocnemius Muscles

Trigger points (TrPs) are a common musculoskeletal cause of local and referred muscle pain, as well as local inflammation in the muscle and fascia. From a clinical and sensory viewpoint, TrPs may be classified as active or latent. The principal difference is the reproduction of symptoms experienced by an individual (active) with or without stimulation. Local and referred pain elicited from latent TrPs may be transient in duration upon stimulation, and latent TrPs may be present without spontaneous symptoms. Both active and latent TrPs induce motor dysfunctions such as stiffness, restricted range of motion, and accelerated fatigability in the affected muscle. The interrater reliability of manual identification of latent TrPs in the calf muscles has been found to range from small to moderate. The clinical relevance of latent TrPs has increased in the last decade,4 and some studies have investigated the effects of treating them. Among all manual therapies targeted to latent TrPs, ischemic compression, or TrP pressure release, is the most commonly used. Although TrPs may affect any muscle, the gastrocnemius muscle may be the most susceptible in the lower extremity to developing them. It has been reported that 13% to 30% of the asymptomatic population has latent TrPs in these muscles, and their presence may affect sport practice. The purpose of this study will be to evaluate changes in neuromuscular function, pain perception, and basic physical properties in myofascial trigger points (TrPs) after a single treatment session of dry needling in the gastrocnemius muscle. A randomized within-participant clinical trial with a blinded assessor will be conducted. 50 asymptomatic volunteers (100 gastrocnemius-muscle) with MrPs gastrocnemius-muscle TrPs will bilaterally explored. Each extremity will be randomly assigned to the control group (no treatment) or the experimental group (60 seconds of dry needling over each TrP). Neuromuscular function of the gastrocnemius muscle will be assessed using a MyotonPro and a tensiomyography. Muscle flexibility will be analyzed using the lunge test and the passive ankle range of motion. The strength will be determined with a handheld dynamometer (MicroFET2). Pain perception will be analyzed with a 0-to-10 numerical pain rating scale and determination of pressure pain thresholds over each latent TrP.

Start: May 2021
Investigating the Minimum Number of Needling Required to Optimize Trigger Point Injections Outcome

Myofascial pain is a common condition in which patients may experience severe chronic pain. The source of this pain is typically the soft tissue. Current methods to address myofascial pain include a procedure called Trigger point Injections. This method involves identifying the areas of muscles that are causing the pain. The most common way to perform trigger point injection involves infiltrating the muscle with local anesthetics and then repeatedly passing the numbing needle in and out of the muscles (needling). This procedure is successful for most patients. However, there is great variability in the way needling is done. Some pain physicians perform 1-2 needle passes while other pain physicians may exceed 20 passes. There are currently no guidelines as to the number or amount of needle passes needed to achieve pain control. Furthermore, there is no study or research to shed light on the relationship between the number of needles passes and the degree and duration of pain relief coupled with patients' satisfaction. This study is proposed to address this gap in knowledge. It is a prospective and randomized clinical trial that follows the standard of care. The investigators will recruit patients from The University-Banner Medical Center at Tucson, Arizona chronic pain clinic who are candidates for trigger point injections. The participants will be randomized into 3 different groups. Group one will receive 2 needle passes per identified trigger point. Group two will receive ten needle passes per identified trigger point. Group three will receive twenty needle passes per identified trigger point. The investigators will analyze the data to understand the relationship between the number of needles passes and the degree of pain relief, improved functional capacity, and patients' satisfaction.

Start: April 2021