NEUROMUSCULAR TAPING (NMT) AND NEUROPLASTICITY: NMT Reduces Pain, Edema and Influences Proprioceptive Cognitive Strategies During Total Knee Arthroplasty Rehabilitation.
- 1. Physical Therapy coordinator, Quadrante (COQ) Orthopedic Center, Omegna, Italy
- 2. Health and Hospital Operations Director Quadrante, (COQ) Orthopedic Center, Omegna, Italy
- 3. Functional Rehabilitation Unit Coordinator, Quadrante (COQ) Orthopedic Center, Omegna, Italy
- 4. NeuroMuscular Taping Institute, Rome, Italy
The objective of this study is to propose new integrative strategies to enhance fast-track recovery after TKA surgery. Twenty patients underwent total knee replacement arthroplasty surgery (TKA) were randomly grouped into an experimental rehabilitation group using physical therapy and application of a standardized decompression NeuroMuscular Taping (NMT) protocol on the operated knee (n° patients: 11) and a control group using physical therapy and an application of a standardized compression sham taping application on the operated knee (n° patients: 9). Each patient was asked to perform active mobilization on the operated knee in a sitting position of (3 sets of 5 repetitions) while wearing a BCI MindWave device (NeuroSky®). The aim of the study was to assess whether the NMT application induces changes in frontal cortex neuronal activity, where cognitive and attentional processes are elaborated. In addition to assess the efficacy of NMT for treating edema and pain secondary to a total knee replacement surgery; patient evaluation items included: lower limb size, range of motion (ROM) and pain (Numerical Rating Scale NRS).
Results: Over the treatment period we discovered that the experimental group had a statistically significant reduction of edema (p<0,01), statistically significant reduction of pain (p<0,01) than the control group. Conversely, there were no significant differences regarding ROM. We recorded a statistically significant improvement in cognitive performance and activation of frontal cortex in patients who carried out attentional feedback exercises with decompressive NMT on their operated knee (p<0.01). Evaluation of EEG wave amplitude showed a greater cognitive activation for the experimental group’s patients: total average amplitudes of alpha, beta and gamma waves were higher and statistically significant (p<0.05) in patients with decompressive NMT. While total average frequencies of alpha, beta and gamma waves did increase all together they did not show a significant variation across all three.
Conclusion: The objective of this study was to investigate treatment options for improving post surgical rehabilitation creating faster track protocols for an ever increasing joint prosthetic population. This study has underlined significantly improved reduction of edema and pain in a rehabilitation context and allowed us to hypothesize the effects generated by a decompressive tape application (NMT) upon circuits delegated to the cognitive-attentional processing of stimuli.