Kinesio Taping for Balance Function after Stroke: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
By Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine | 16 July 2019
Type:Systematic Review
Sample Size:1331
Outcome:Positive
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Objective

With the increasing social and economic burdens of balance impairment after stroke, the treatment for balance impairment after stroke becomes a major public health problem worldwide. Kinesio taping (KT) as a part of clinical practice has been used widely in the treatment of balance impairment after stroke. However, the clinical effects of KT for balance function have not been confirmed. The objective of this study is to investigate the effects and safety of KT for balance impairment after stroke.

Methods

We conducted a systematic review (SR) and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on the effects of KT for balance impairment after stroke. We searched the following databases: (1) English databases: EMBASE (via Ovid), MEDLINE (via Ovid), the Cochrane library, PubMed, and PEDro; (2) Chinese databases: China Biology Medicine (CBM), Wan Fang database, China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), and VIP. Besides, hand searches of relevant references were also conducted. We systematically searched from the inception to December 2018, using the keywords (Kinesio, Kinesio Tape, tape, or Orthotic Tape) and (stroke, hemiplegia, or hemiplegic paralysis) and (balance or stability). The search strategies were adjusted for each database. The reference lists of included articles were reviewed for relevant trials. For missing data, we contacted the authors to get additional information.

Results

22 RCTs involved 1331 patients, among which 667 patients in the experimental group and 664 patients in the control group were included. Results of meta-analysis showed that, compared with conventional rehabilitation (CR), there was significant difference in Berg Balance Scale (BBS) (MD=4.46, 95%CI 1.72 to 7.19, P=0.001), Time Up and Go Test (TUGT) (MD=-4.62, 95%CI -5.48 to -3.79, P < 0.00001), functional ambulation category scale (FAC) (MD=0.53, 95%CI 0.38 to 0.68, P < 0.00001), Fugl-Meyer assessment (FMA-L) (MD=4.20, 95%CI 3.17 to 5.24, P < 0.00001), and Modified Ashworth Scale (MAS) (MD=-0.38, 95%CI -0.49 to -0.27, P < 0.00001). The results of subgroup analysis showed that there was no significant difference between KT and CR with ≤ 4 weeks treatment duration (< 4 weeks: MD=5.03, 95%CI -1.80 to 11.85, P=0.15; =4 weeks: MD=4.33, 95%CI -1.50 to 10.15, P=0.15), while there was significant difference with more than 4-week treatment duration (MD=4.77, 95%CI 2.58 to 6.97, P < 0.0001).

Conclusions

Based on current evidence, KT was more effective than CR for balance function, lower limb function, and walking function in poststroke patients. Longer treatment duration may be associated with better effects. However, more well-conducted RCTs are required in the future.

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