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  • Author: Natalia Twarowska x
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Open access

Natalia Twarowska and Agnieszka Niemierzycka

Abstract

Introduction: Calcaneal spur is a pathology of the fibrocartilage enthesis of the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia or a pathology of the mixed enthesis of the flexor digitorum brevis muscle. Ultrasound therapy is commonly applied in the conservative treatment of a calcaneal spur. Foot muscle strengthening exercises, stretching exercises and soft tissue therapy are indicated as effective methods of conservative treatment. The aim of the study was to compare and assess the effects of ultrasound therapy and selected techniques of manual therapy on pain level and functional state in patients with calcaneal spur.

Material and methods: Twenty-two patients (14 females and 8 males) with calcaneal spur were included in the study. They were randomly assigned to two groups (A and B) with different therapies administered. Group A was treated with ultrasound therapy combined with soft tissue therapy, while group B was subjected to manual therapy only.

Results: Significant pain reduction and an increase in functional capacity were noted in all patients from both groups. No statistically significant differences between the groups were found in pain intensity following the therapies.

Conclusions: Our findings confirm the relevance of using ultrasound and soft tissue therapies in the conservative treatment of calcaneal spur and prove the need to carry out further research on a larger sample size. These therapies brought about significant pain reduction retained over a period of 3 weeks. A series of 10 therapy sessions is enough to improve pain and functional capacity outcomes; however, it will never result in complete pain relief. A greater number of interventions might contribute to an increase in therapy effectiveness.

Open access

Karolina Kielar, Justyna Drzał-Grabiec, Aleksandra Truszczyńska and Natalia Twarowska

Abstract

Background: Osteoarthritis (OA) is one of the most common joint disorders and affects a significant percentage of the elderly. Reflexology is a therapeutic method of applying appropriate compression technique to pressure points located, for instance, on feet. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of foot reflexology treatment on pain and vitality level in persons with osteoarthritis. Material and Methods: The study was conducted on a group 20 individuals (16 women and 4 men) aged 41-76, who suffered from osteoarthritis. Two questionnaires (surveys), i.e. the NRS scale and the WOMAC questionnaire, were the research tools applied in the study. The study was conducted prior to the therapy and after a series of 8 sessions. Results: After the treatment, the researchers observed an improvement in average results obtained in the WOMAC questionnaire. Moreover, the respondents reported a reduction in pain intensity and improvement in functionality. The applied treatment effectively reduced the intake of pain medications by the surveyed individuals (p = 0.006). The respondents also reported improvement in the quality of sleep. Conclusions: According to the individuals surveyed, reflexology is an effective analgesic method, as a notable reduction in pain severity was observed. Reflexology increases the activity of patients and reduces the intake of pain medications.