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

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations

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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