Effects of Kinesio Taping on Post-Needling Induced Pain After Dry Needling of Active Trigger Point in Individuals With Mechanical Neck Pain

J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2020 Jan;43(1):32-42. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2019.02.011. Epub 2020 Feb 13.


Objective: The purpose of this study was to assess the effectiveness of the application of kinesio taping in reducing induced pain after dry needling of active trigger points (TrPs) to the upper trapezius muscle.

Methods: Consecutive patients had mechanical neck pain (n = 34, 44% female) with active TrPs in the upper trapezius muscle. All participants received dry needling into upper trapezius active TrPs. Then, they were randomly divided into a kinesio taping group, which received an adhesive tape (Kinesio Tex), and a control group, which did not receive the taping. The numeric pain rating scale was assessed (0-10) at post-needling; immediately after; and 24 hours, 48 hours, and 72 hours after needling. Neck- and shoulder-related disability was assessed before and 72 hours after needling with the Neck Disability Index (NDI) and the Shoulder Pain and Disability Index, respectively. The pressure pain threshold (PPT) over the TrP was also assessed post-needling, immediately post-intervention, and 72 hours after needling.

Results: The analysis of covariance did not find a significant group × time interaction (P = .26) for post-needling soreness: both groups exhibited similar changes in post-needling induced pain (P < .001). No significant group × time interactions were observed for changes in NDI (P = .62), SPADI (P = .41), or PPTs (P = .52): similar improvements were found after the needling procedure for the NDI (P < .001), Shoulder Pain and Disability Index (P < .001), and PPT (P < .001). The number of local twitch responses and sex (all, P > .30) did not influence the effect for any outcome.

Conclusion: The application of kinesio taping after dry needling of active TrPs in the upper trapezius muscle was not effective for reducing post-needling induced pain in people with mechanical neck pain. Further, the application of kinesio taping as a post-needling intervention did not influence short-term changes in disability.

Keywords: Dry Needling; Kinesio Tape; Neck Pain; Trigger Point.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Athletic Tape*
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Dry Needling*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neck Pain / therapy*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Pain Threshold
  • Trigger Points*