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The effects of patellar taping on knee joint proprioception

PainSci » bibliography » Callaghan et al 2002
Tags: etiology, treatment, taping, patellar pain, IT band pain, running, pro, controversy, debunkery, devices, arthritis, aging, pain problems, knee, leg, limbs, overuse injury, injury, exercise, self-treatment, tendinosis

Three articles on PainSci cite Callaghan 2002: 1. The Complete Guide to IT Band Syndrome2. The Complete Guide to Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome3. Do IT Band Straps Work for Runner’s Knee?

PainSci commentary on Callaghan 2002: ?This page is one of thousands in the bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided wherever possible.

This article provides an important clue that may help to rationalize the use of a “Patt Strap,” “Cho Strap” or “iliotibial band syndrome strap,” and also suggests a possible mechanism for therapeutic effect on patellofemoral syndrome in particular, as well as other problems. This evidence suggests that proprioception is enhanced by patellar taping. From the abstract: “Subjects with good proprioception did not benefit from patellar taping. However, in those healthy subjects with poor proprioceptive ability ... patellar taping provided proprioceptive enhancement.” Ten years later, the same researchers demonstrated that brain activity is modulated by taping (see Callaghan 2012).

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effects of patellar taping on knee joint proprioception.

DESIGN AND SETTING: In a research unit, 3 proprioceptive tests were performed. For each of the tests, a standardized patellar taping technique was applied in random order.

SUBJECTS: Fifty-two healthy volunteers (27 women, 25 men; age, 23.2 +/- 4.6 years; body mass index, 23.3 +/- 3.7).

MEASUREMENTS: We measured active angle reproduction, passive angle reproduction, and threshold to detection of passive movement on an isokinetic dynamometer.

RESULTS: We found no significant differences between the tape and no-tape conditions in any of the 3 proprioceptive tests (P >.05). However, when the subjects' results for active angle reproduction and passive angle reproduction were graded as good (5 degrees), taping was found to improve significantly those with poor proprioceptive ability (P <.01).

CONCLUSIONS: Subjects with good proprioception did not benefit from patellar taping. However, in those healthy subjects with poor proprioceptive ability as measured by active and passive ankle reproduction, patellar taping provided proprioceptive enhancement. Further studies are needed to investigate the effect of patellar taping on the proprioceptive status of patients with patellofemoral pain syndrome.

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