Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine immediate effects of ischemic compression (IC) and ultrasound (US) for the treatment of myofascial trigger points (MTrPs) in the trapezius muscle.
Methods: Sixty-six volunteers, all CEU-Cardenal Herrera University, Valencia, Spain, personnel, participated in this study. Subjects were healthy individuals, diagnosed with latent MTrPs in the trapezius muscle. Subjects were randomly placed into 3 groups: G1, which received IC treatment for MTrPs; G2, which received US; and G3 (control), which received sham US. The following data were recorded before and after each treatment: active range of motion (AROM) of cervical rachis measured with a cervical range of motion instrument, basal electrical activity (BEA) of muscle trapezius measured with surface electromyography, and pressure tolerance of MTrP measured with visual analogue scale assessing local pain evoked by the application of 2.5 kg/cm(2) of pressure using a pressure analog algometer.
Results: The results showed an immediate decrease in BEA of the trapezius muscle and a reduction of MTrP sensitivity after treatment with both therapeutic modalities. In the case of IC, an improvement of AROM of cervical rachis was also been obtained.
Conclusion: In this group of participants, both treatments were shown to have an immediate effect on latent MTrPs. The results show a relation among AROM of cervical rachis, BEA of the trapezius muscle, and MTrP sensitivity of the trapezius muscle gaining short-term positive effects with use of IC.