Although increasingly used for therapeutic treatment, only limited evidence exists regarding the effects of kinesio taping on patients with knee osteoarthritis (OA).
To determine the effects of kinesio taping on pain, function, gait, and neuromuscular control concerning patients with knee OA.
Randomized sham-controlled trial.
Setting University laboratory.
A total of 141 patients (65.1 [7.0] y) with a clinical and radiographic diagnosis of knee OA. Intervention: Kinesio tape, sham tape, or no tape for 3 consecutive days.
Main Outcome Measures
Self-reported pain, stiffness, and function were measured by the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC). Further tests included the Balance Error Scoring System, 10-m walk test, the maximum voluntary isometric contraction force of the quadriceps femoris, and knee active range of motion.
At baseline, there were no differences in all outcomes between groups except for knee flexion. Significant effects were found for WOMAC pain (tape vs sham, P = .05; tape vs control, P = .047), stiffness (tape vs sham, P = .01; tape vs control, P ≤ .001), and physical function (tape vs sham, P = .03; tape vs control P = .004). No interactions were found for balance, muscle strength, walking speed, or active range of motion.
Wearing kinesio tape for 3 consecutive days had beneficial effects regarding self-reported clinical outcomes of pain, joint stiffness, and function. This emphasizes that kinesio taping might be an adequate conservative treatment for the symptoms of knee OA.