Content » Vol 50, Issue 10

Review article

Effects of extracorporeal shock wave therapy on spasticity in post-stroke patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Jie Xiang, Wei Wang, Weifeng Jiang, Qiuchen Qian
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Xuzhou Medical College Affiliated Hospital, 221000 Xuzhou, China. E-mail: 18052268386@163.com

DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2385

Abstract

Objective: To evaluate whether extracorporeal shock wave therapy significantly improves spasticity in post-stroke patients.
Design: Systematic review and meta-analysis.
Data sources: PubMed, EMBASE, EBSCO, Web of Science, Cochrane CENTRAL electronic databases.
Study selection: Randomized controlled trials assessing the effect of extracorporeal shock wave therapy on post-stroke patients with spasticity were selected for inclusion.
Data extraction: Two authors independently screened the literature, extracted data, and assessed the quality of included studies. Primary outcome was modified Ashworth scale (MAS). Secondary outcomes were Modified Tardieu Scale (MTS), H/M ratio and range of motion.
Data synthesis: Eight randomized controlled trial studies (n = 385 patients) were included in the meta-analysis. There was a high level of evidence that extracorporeal shock wave therapy significantly ameliorates spasticity in post-stroke patients according to the 4 parameters: MAS (standard mean difference (SMD) −1.22; 95% confidence interval (95% CI): −1.77 to −0.66); MTS (SMD 0.70; 95% CI 0.42–0.99,); H/M ratio (weighted mean difference (WMD) –0.76; 95% CI –1.19 to –0.33); range of motion (SMD 0.69; 95% CI 0.06–1.32). However, there was no statically significant difference on the MAS at 4 weeks (SMD –1.73; 95% CI –3.99 to 0.54).
Conclusion: Extracorporeal shock wave therapy has a significant effect on spasticity in post-stroke patients.

Lay Abstract

The effect of extracorporeal shock wave therapy on spasticity in post-stroke patients has been evaluated in several clinical trials. In addition, a recent meta-analysis suggests that such therapy is effective; however, the measurement of spasticity was based mainly on the modified Ashworth scale, which is insufficient, and a lack of randomized controlled trials studies in the study design may have biased the results. Therefore, considering the potential limitations of the previous meta-analysis, the aim of the current study was to perform a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials to evaluate the effectiveness of extracorporeal shock wave therapy on spasticity in post-stroke patients. Furthermore, subgroup analysis was performed to identify potential moderators or mediators.

Supplementary content

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