Background: Dry needling (DN) in active myofascial trigger points (MTrPs) is effective to reduce pain, increase range of motion (ROM) and improve physical function in different musculoskeletal disorders. However, there is a lack of studies evaluating the effects of DN in active MTrPs in hip osteoarthritis (OA).
Objective: To determine the short-term effects of DN on pain, hip ROM and physical function in patients with hip OA.
Design: Double-blind randomized controlled trial.
Methods: Thirty patients with unilateral hip OA were randomized into two groups: DN group and sham group. Participants received three treatment sessions. The treatment was applied in active MTrPs of the iliopsoas, rectus femoris, tensor fasciae latae and gluteus minimus muscles. Pain intensity (visual analogic scale), passive hip ROM (universal goniometer and digital inclinometer) and physical function (30s chair-stand test and 20m walk test) were assessed at baseline and after the three treatment sessions.
Results: There was decreased pain intensity, increased hip ROM, and improved physical function following the DN treatment. These improvements were statistically significant (p < 0.05) compared to the sham group. The sham group had increased pain intensity and decreased hip ROM (p < 0.05).
Conclusion: Pain, hip ROM, and physical function improved after the application of DN in active MTrPs of the hip muscles in patients with hip OA.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT03202056.
Keywords: Hip osteoarthritis; Pain; Range of motion; Trigger points.
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