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Glenohumeral posterior mobilization versus conventional physiotherapy for primary adhesive capsulitis: a randomized clinical trial
Gutierrez Espinoza HJ, Pavez F, Guajardo C, Acosta M
Medwave 2015 Sep;15(8):e6267
clinical trial
8/10 [Eligibility criteria: Yes; Random allocation: Yes; Concealed allocation: Yes; Baseline comparability: Yes; Blind subjects: No; Blind therapists: No; Blind assessors: Yes; Adequate follow-up: Yes; Intention-to-treat analysis: Yes; Between-group comparisons: Yes; Point estimates and variability: Yes. Note: Eligibility criteria item does not contribute to total score] *This score has been confirmed*

OBJECTIVE: To compare the short-term efficacy of a glenohumeral posterior mobilization technique versus conventional physiotherapy for the improvement of the range of external rotation in patients with primary adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder. METHODS: This is a randomized clinical trial conducted at Hospital Clinico San Borja Arriaran in Chile. Fifty-seven patients with an age range of 50 to 58 years old were enrolled in two groups. Both groups were randomized to receive a treatment of 10 sessions: the experimental group (n = 29) received a glenohumeral posterior mobilization technique after training with a cycle ergometer, and the control group (n = 28) received conventional physiotherapy. The primary outcome measure was range of passive movement in external rotation; secondary outcomes were forward flexion and shoulder abduction, pain perception using the visual analogue scale and functionality test using the Constant-Murley Score. RESULTS: The study had the statistical power to detect a difference of four degrees between the groups in the improvement of the range of external rotation at the end of the treatment period. The experimental group showed a significant improvement with a mean difference of 46.3 degrees (SD 8.7) compared to 18.1 (SD 7.2) in the control group (p < 0.0001). There was also a decrease in the perception of pain (p = 0.0002) and improved function (p < 0.0001) in the group treated with glenohumeral posterior mobilization technique. CONCLUSIONS: The glenohumeral posterior mobilization technique applied after training with cycle ergometer is an effective short-term technique to treat primary adhesive capsulitis decreasing the severity of pain and improving joint function compared with conventional physiotherapy treatment. The degree of increase in shoulder external rotation is more than 20 degrees beyond the increase achieved with conventional treatment.

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