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Kinesiology Tape Reduces Pain and Disability in Female Patients with Chronic Lower Back Pain

Studies occur all the time concerning the effectiveness of kinesiology tape to treat muscular issues, with some being of higher quality than others. Recently, a study was conducted that concluded the effectiveness of kinesiology tape in treating pain and disability in female patients.

Conducted by Macedo et al. in July 2018, their study included a sample size of 108 women ages 18 to 50; all of them suffered from “chronic, non-specific lower back pain” for longer than three months. Upon the conclusion of the study, it was found that there was a significant drop in pain and disability scores when women were re-tested following the wearing of two kinesiology strips over the lower back on each side of the spine for three days. The improvements were found to have occurred when the tape was either applied correctly (a small amount of tape tension was present) or if it was applied with the patients sitting upright but with no tape tension. However, there was no reduction of pain within either the control group, who had no tape applications or other interventions, or the groups who used “micropore,” a non-stretchy tape.

micropore

Some reduction in pain levels was recorded across all three groups that underwent tape applications, when compared too little to no change within the control group. Although this may bring up the indication that any sensory input may help in reducing chronic lower back pain, only the two groups who used kinesiology tape showed a reduction of pain on average of more than 2/10; this rating is used as the benchmark for a “clinically important difference.”

Concerning a reduction in disability, the study utilized the Roland Morris Disability Questionnaire for measurements. Again, all groups using tape showed change, however,  only those in the two groups using kinesiology tape had any clinically meaningful change of over 30% after three days; within these two groups, the group with the correctly-applied tape maintained these improvements at ten days as well.

Although the study also explored the measures of range of movement of the lower back, the lumbar erector spinae muscles’ EMG activity, and these muscles’ strength in extension tasks, there were no significant changes across the groups.

The findings of Macedo et al. are similar to those of Parreira et al. conducted four years earlier in 2014. The latter also found pain and disability reduction in a select population after four weeks of using kinesiology taping, regardless of the application method. It should be noted that the Parreira study did not include a control group like that seen in the Macedo study.

Macedo

When the results of both studies are taken together, the results found indicate that kinesiology taping can provide short-term pain and disability reduction for those with chronic lower back pain. Both studies also demonstrated that whether or not the kinesiology tape was applied “properly” didn’t matter. As a result, both studies open the door for studies and use of kinesiology tape as an effective “sidekick” to more standard treatments. This potentially allows other treatments like general and strengthening exercises to increase, which can potentially lead to greater long-term changes. This may also help reduce the current reliance on opioids and other addictive medications currently in use for chronic lower back pain treatments by providing a non-invasive and incredibly low risk alternative to pain management.

For more information and to view the full study conducted by Macedo et al., please click here.

To view the earlier 2014 study by Parreira et al., please go here.

Author’s bio

Author Bio

Rhett Desormeaux is a content writer currently working with BreezeMaxWeb. He’s a passionate writer and loves studying ancient history, especially Bronze Age civilizations.

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