Background The European League Against Rheumatism recommended taping on the osteoarthritic knees recently.1 However there is still insufficient evidence about which taping intervention is effective. Kinesio tape, an alternative taping technique, has been theorized to improve a variety of physiological problems, including pain, based on the functions of the tape.2 The acute effect of Kinesio taping on pain has been well identified by previous studies3,4, however effects on physical function in knee osteoarthritis has not been reported yet.
Objectives The purpose of the pilot study was to investigate the acute effect of Kinesio Taping on pain and Aggregated Locomotor Function (ALF) score in knee osteoarthritis
Methods Fourteen patients (17 knees) with knee osteoarthritis according to Kellegrence Lawrence scale grade 2 or 3 (11 female, 3 male) with a mean age of 53,1±6,1 years included to the study. Patients received written and verbal explanations of the purpose of the study and of the procedures to be applied. They signed informed consent forms. The pain level was evaluated with a Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) in resting and activity time and ALF score was used to assess physical function before and after Kinesio Taping application. The ALF score is a sum of the mean time (seconds) taken to complete three physical function tasks: walking eight meters, ascending and descending seven stairs, and transferring two meters from a sitting to standing position. Each task was carried out separately with a break in between. Taping intervention were applied by certificated physical therapist on knee, quadriceps and hamstring muscles with 25% and without tension.
Results The mean body mass index and disease duration was found 30.1±4.4 kg/m2 3.9±2.1 years respectively. The VAS values and ALF scores (walking, ascending and descending stairs, transfering time) significantly reduced after Kinesio Taping application in knee osteoarthritis (p=0.04, p=0.01, p=0.005, p=0,01, p=0,001 and p=0.02; respectively).
Conclusions The acute results indicated that patients with osteoarthritis of knee gain clinical benefits from Kinesio Taping application on pain and physical function. However, the long term effects of Kinezio Taping application on pain and physical function is unknown. Further investigation including different kinesio taping application methods with larger sample size are required to reveal short and long term effects.
Fernandes L, Hagen KB, Bijlsma JW, et al. EULAR recommendations for the non-pharmacological core management of hip and knee osteoarthritis. Ann Rheum Dis. 2013 Jul;72(7):1125-35.
Mostafavifar M, Wertz J, Borchers J. A systematic review of the effectiveness of kinesio taping for musculoskeletal injury. The Physician and Sportsmedicine 2012, 40(4):33-40.
Hinman RS, Crossley KM, McConnell J, Bennell KL. Efficacy of knee tape in the management of osteoarthritis of the knee: blinded randomised controlled trial. BMJ. 2003 Jul 19;327(7407):135.
Anandkumar S, Sudarshan S, Nagpal P. Efficacy of kinesio taping on isokinetic quadriceps torque in knee osteoarthritis: a double blinded randomized controlled study. Physiother Theory Pract. 2014 Aug;30(6):375-83.
Disclosure of Interest None declared