Effects of Whole-Body Vibration on Motor Impairments in Patients With Neurological Disorders: A Systematic Review

Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2019 Dec;98(12):1084-1098. doi: 10.1097/PHM.0000000000001252.


Objective: This systematic review was conducted to examine the effects of whole-body vibration training on motor impairments among patients with neurological disorders and to investigate which the whole-body vibration training parameters induced improvement in motor impairments.

Design: PubMed, SCOPUS, PEDro, REHABDATA, and Web of Science were searched for randomized controlled trials and pseudo-randomized controlled trials investigated the effect of whole-body vibration on motor impairments in patients with neurological disorders. The methodological quality was rated using the Cochrane Collaboration's tool.

Results: Twenty studies were included in this systematic review. Four studies included patients with multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy (n = 2), stroke (n = 9), Parkinson disease (n = 3), spinal cord injuries (n = 1), and spinocerebellar ataxia (n = 1). The results showed different evidence of benefits and nonbenefits for whole-body vibration training in motor impairments outcomes.

Conclusions: There is weak evidence for a positive effect of short-term whole-body vibration training on spasticity of lower limbs, mobility, balance, and postural control. Besides, positive effect of the long-term effect of whole-body vibration training on mobility in patients with neurological disorders. The optimal whole-body vibration training parameters in treating patients with neurological disorders remain unclear.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Humans
  • Muscle Contraction / physiology
  • Nervous System Diseases / therapy*
  • Physical Therapy Modalities / statistics & numerical data*
  • Postural Balance / physiology*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Vibration / therapeutic use*