Objective: The purpose of this study is to examine whether Dutch-speaking physiotherapists in Belgium report using evidence-based practice methods for the treatment for patients with shoulder impingement syndrome (SIS).
Methods: An online questionnaire, consisting of open-ended and multiple choice questions, was sent to Dutch-speaking members of the representative Belgian physiotherapists society that likely treated patients with shoulder pain. The electronic survey was sent to members of the Belgian Physiotherapists Society (AXXON) (n = 3877). Therapists were asked to report interventions that they used for the treatment for patients with SIS. Survey responses were interpreted using current literature that supports various active treatments for SIS, including supervised exercise, home exercise, and exercise therapy combined with manual therapy.
Results: A total of 119 (3%) of the AXXON members completed the online survey (68 men; mean age, 38 years). Sixty-one percent of the respondents were manual therapists, and 36% were sports physiotherapists. Exercise therapy was the most often reported therapeutic intervention (96.6%). Manual mobilization was most frequently reported for the treatment of SIS (94.1%), followed by postural training (85.7%) and stretching (76.5%). The remaining interventions were applied by less than 54% of the responders.
Conclusions: The results suggest that exercise therapy and manual therapy were reportedly used by most physiotherapists responding to this survey. These practices are in line with current evidence for the treatment of SIS.
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