Kinesio Taping does not decrease swelling in acute, lateral ankle sprain of athletes: a randomised trial

J Physiother. 2015 Jan;61(1):28-33. doi: 10.1016/j.jphys.2014.11.002. Epub 2014 Dec 9.


Question: Does Kinesio Taping reduce swelling in athletes who have suffered an acute, lateral ankle sprain?

Design: Randomised controlled trial with concealed allocation, intention-to-treat analysis and blinded assessment.

Participants: Thirty-six athletes who participated regularly in one of seven different sports modalities and suffered an acute ankle sprain.

Intervention: The experimental group received Kinesio Taping application for 3 days, which was designed to treat swelling. The control group received an inert Kinesio Taping application.

Outcome measures: For the comparison between groups, the swelling was measured via volumetry, perimetry, relative volumetry and two analyses of the difference in volume and perimetry between ankles of each participant. Data were collected immediately after the 3 days of intervention and at follow-up, which was 15 days post intervention.

Results: At 3 days after intervention, there were no differences between groups for swelling in volumetry (MD -2 ml, 95% CI -28 to 32); perimetry (MD 0.2 cm, 95% CI -0.6 to 1.0); relative volumetry (MD 0.0 cm, 95% CI -0.1 to 0.1); and the other analyses. At day 15 follow-up, there were no significant between-group differences in outcomes.

Conclusion: The application of Kinesio Taping, with the aim of stimulating the lymphatic system, is ineffective in decreasing acute swelling after an ankle sprain in athletes.

Trial registration: Brazilian Registry of Clinical Trials, RBR-32sctf.

Keywords: Ankle injuries; Bandages; Lymphatic system; Oedema; Sprains and strains.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Ankle Injuries / therapy*
  • Athletes*
  • Athletic Tape*
  • Brazil
  • Edema / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lymphatic System / physiology
  • Male
  • Sprains and Strains / therapy*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult

Associated data

  • ReBec/RBR32SCTF