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Position-Oriented Scapular Taping in the Treatment of Shoulder Pain and Impingement

1 May 1999


The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of position-oriented scapular (shoulder) taping (POST) on shoulder pain and range of motion. Currently physical therapists use POST as a conservative adjunct treatment in the management of shoulder impingement syndrome. However, a paucity of research has addressed the efficacy of this technique. In this study 20 subjects, between the ages 18 and 66, with shoulder impingement syndrome received position-oriented scapular taping. Each subject received three treatment variables: no tape, sham tape and position-oriented scapular taping. We found a significant decrease (p < .05) in the overall pain rating when the POST was in place and an increase in the active range of motion prior to the onset of pain during shoulder flexion. Eighteen of the 20 subjects had decreased pain and/or increased ROM prior to the onset of pain. However, use of POST did not significantly improve overall active range of motion. These results indicate that POST is a useful tool for the physical therapist to use when treating a patient with shoulder impingement syndrome.


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