Author(s): Damgaard P, Bartels EM, Ris I, Christensen R, JuulKristensen B
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Abstract Chronic neck pain (CNP) is common and costly, and the effect of physiotherapeutic interventions on the condition is unclear. We reviewed the literature for evidence of effect of physiotherapy interventions on patients with CNP. Five bibliographic databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, and PEDro) were systematically searched. Randomised, placebo and active-treatment-controlled trials including physiotherapy interventions for adults with CNP were selected. Data were extracted primary outcome was pain. Risk of bias was appraised. Effect of an intervention was assessed, weighted to risk of bias. 42 trials reporting on randomised comparisons of various physiotherapy interventions and control conditions were eligible for inclusion involving 3919 patients with CNP. Out of these, 23 were unclear or at high risk of bias, and their results were considered moderate- or low-quality evidence. Nineteen were at low risk of bias, and here eight trials found effect on pain of a physiotherapy intervention. Only exercise therapy, focusing on strength and endurance training, and multimodal physiotherapy, cognitive-behavioural interventions, massage, manipulations, laser therapy, and to some extent also TNS appear to have an effect on CNP. However, sufficient evidence for application of a specific physiotherapy modality or aiming at a specific patient subgroup is not available.
This article was published in ISRN Pain
and referenced in Journal of Physiotherapy & Physical Rehabilitation