Category: Clinical Practice (assessment, diagnosis, treatment, knowledge translation/EBP, implementation science, program development); Pain Rehabilitation; Health Services Research
Objective : This study aimed to investigate the effects of high frequency therapy in subjects with gastrocnemius (GCM) tightness.
Design : The study was designed as a one group before-after trial.
Setting : Wonju Campus of Yonsei University, South Korea.
Participants (or Animals, Specimens, Cadavers) : The participants included 28 volunteers with GCM tightness (an active ankle dorsiflexion angle of less than 12°). The participants with GCM tightness due to a neurological problem, a history of injury, surgery on the calf or ankle, or a metal insert in the area requiring therapy were the excluded from the study.
Interventions : WINBACK Transfer Electrode Capacitive and Resistive Therapy was used to apply high frequency therapy on the patients' GCMs for 10–15 minutes.
Main Outcome Measure(s) : The pennation angle and the fascicle length of the GCM were measured using ultrasonography. The flexibility of the ankle joint, peak torque to the passive ankle dorsiflexion, and soft tissue stiffness were measured. The soft tissue stiffness was evaluated using a hand-held myotonometer.
Results : The pennation angle was significantly decreased following the intervention; however, no significant difference in the fascicle length was found. The flexibility was significantly increased and the passive peak torque to passive ankle dorsiflexion and the soft tissue stiffness significantly decreased (p < .05).
The high frequency therapy is clinically helpful and effective in terms of improving the muscle mechanical properties and functional factors of participants with GCM tightness. Longitudinal clinical studies are required to investigate the long-term effects of the high frequency therapy on people with GCM tightness from various causes.
Ji-hyun Kim– Doctoral student, yonsei univ., kangwon-do, Kangwon-do
Joo-hee Park– Research professor, Yonsei university, Wonju, Kangwon-do
Hyeo-bin Yoon– student/researcher, yonsei univ., Wonju, Kangwon-do
Jun-hyeok Lee– student/researcher, Yonsei University, Wonju, Kangwon-do
Hye-Seon Jeon– Professor, yonsei univ., Wonju, Kangwon-do