Intramuscular electrical stimulation for hemiplegic shoulder pain: A 12-month follow-up of a multiple-center, randomized clinical trial

John Chae, David T. Yu, Maria E. Walker, Andrew Kirsteins, Elie P. Elovic, Steven R. Flanagan, Richard L. Harvey, Richard D. Zorowitz, Frederick S. Frost, Julie H. Grill, Zi Ping Fang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: Assess the effectiveness of intramuscular electrical stimulation in reducing hemiplegic shoulder pain at 12 mos posttreatment. Design: A total of 61 chronic stroke survivors with shoulder pain and subluxation participated in this multiple-center, single-blinded, randomized clinical trial. Treatment subjects received intramuscular electrical stimulation to the supraspinatus, posterior deltoid, middle deltoid, and upper trapezius for 6 hrs/day for 6 wks. Control subjects were treated with a cuff-type sling for 6 wks. Brief Pain Inventory question 12, an 11-point numeric rating scale was administered in a blinded manner at baseline, end of treatment, and at 3, 6, and 12 mos posttreatment. Treatment success was defined as a minimum 2-point reduction in Brief Pain Inventory question 12 at all posttreatment assessments. Secondary measures included pain-related quality of life (Brief Pain Inventory question 23), subluxation, motor impairment, range of motion, spasticity, and activity limitation. Results: The electrical stimulation group exhibited a significantly higher success rate than controls (63% vs. 21%, P = 0.001). Repeated-measure analysis of variance revealed significant treatment effects on posttreatment Brief Pain Inventory question 12 (F = 21.2, P < 0.001) and Brief Pain Inventory question 23 (F = 8.3, P < 0.001). Treatment effects on other secondary measures were not significant. Conclusions: Intramuscular electrical stimulation reduces hemiplegic shoulder pain, and the effect is maintained for > 1 2 mos posttreatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)832-842
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Volume84
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2005

Keywords

  • Electrical stimulation
  • Shoulder pain
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation

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