Effects of nerve mobilization exercise as an adjunct to the conservative treatment for patients with tarsal tunnel syndrome

J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2011 Sep;34(7):441-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2011.05.017. Epub 2011 Jul 27.


Objective: This study was carried out with the aim of investigating the contribution of nerve mobilization exercises to the conservative treatment of tarsal tunnel syndrome.

Methods: In this clinical trial, 28 patients were randomly allocated into 2 groups. The control group was composed of 14 patients who were treated conservatively with a program consisting of physiotherapy and supportive inserts, whereas 14 patients in the study group were given nerve mobilization exercises in addition to the same treatment. Allpatients were followed up for 6 weeks. Before treatment, subjects were evaluated for muscle strength, range of motion, pain, sensory tests, and clinical manifestations of tarsal tunnel syndrome. The evaluations were repeated after 6 weeks.

Results: There was a significant difference in favor of posttreatment values for range of motion, muscle strength, and pain in both groups (P < .05). Intergroup comparisons showed no difference between the groups for these parameters. Significant results were attained in the study group for 2-point discrimination and light touch and Tinel sign after treatment (P < .05).

Conclusion: Patients in both groups showed improvement from conservative treatment. The results of the study group showed that nerve mobilization exercises have a positive effect on 2-point discrimination and light touch and Tinel sign.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength
  • Pain Measurement
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome / physiopathology
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome / therapy*
  • Tibial Nerve / physiopathology