Objective: To examine the effect of whole body vibration on balance, gait performance and mobility among people with stroke.
Method: A systematic review was conducted by two independent reviewers who completed the article search and selection. We included randomized controlled trials published in English examining effects of whole body vibration on balance, gait, mobility, muscle strength and muscle tone in adults with a clinical diagnosis of stroke. Articles were excluded if they were research studies on people with other primary diagnosis, abstracts published in the conferences or books. The Cochrane risk of bias tool was used to assess the methodological quality of the selected studies.
Data source: Sources included Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Pubmed, MEDLINE, CINAHL, EMBASE, PEDro, PsycINFO, Science Citation Index, ClinicalTrials.gov, Current Controlled Trials, Stroke Trials Registry, and reference lists of all relevant articles.
Result: Eight randomized controlled trials (nine articles) involving 271 participants were included in this meta-analysis. No significant improvement was found regarding Berg balance scale (SMD=-0.08, 95%CI=-1.35 to 1.19, P=0.91), mobility (SMD=0.45, 95%CI=-0.46 to 1.37, P=0.33), maximal isometric contracion of knee extension strength (SMD=0.23, 95%CI=-0.27 to 0.74, P=0.36), and maximal isometric contracion of knee extension strength (SMD=0.09, 95%CI=-0.38 to 0.56, P=0.71).
Conclusion: There was no evidence for effects of whole body vibration on balance in people with stroke. Effects of whole body vibration on mobility and gait performance remain inconclusive. More large and high-quality trials are required.
Keywords: Stroke; meta-analysis; mobility; vibration.
© The Author(s) 2014.