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  • Feasibility of conducting a cohort randomised controlled trial assessing the effectiveness of a nurse-led package of care for knee pain

    das Nair, Roshan (2023)
    OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the feasibility of conducting a cohort randomised-controlled trial (RCT) of a nurse-led package of care for knee pain and determine treatment sequence for use in a future trial. METHODS: Open label, three-arm, single-centre, mixed-methods, feasibility cohort RCT. Adults aged ≥40 years with moderate-to-severe knee pain for ≥3 months were eligible. Participants were randomised into groups A (non-pharmacological treatment first), B (pharmacological treatment first), or group C (usual care). The intervention was delivered over 26-weeks. Outcomes were dropout rate, recruitment rate, intervention fidelity, ability to collect outcome data and treatment acceptability. RESULTS: Seventeen participants were randomised and enrolled into each of groups A and B (5.2% recruitment rate), and 174 randomised to group C. Participant characteristics at randomisation were comparable across the three arms. COVID-19 paused the study from March-November-2020. Participants enrolled in groups A and B before March-2020 were withdrawn at restart. Of the 20 participants enrolled after restart, 18 completed the study (10% dropout). The nurse reported delivering most aspects of the intervention with high fidelity. Participants viewed the package of care as structured, supportive and holistic, they learnt about self-managing knee pain, and could engage with and follow the non-pharmacological treatment. Most found the non-pharmacological treatment more useful than the pharmacological treatment, preferring to receive it before or alongside analgesia. Many self-reported questionnaires were not fully completed. CONCLUSIONS: The nurse-led package of care for knee pain was acceptable with low dropout, although the cohort RCT design may not be feasible for a definitive trial. TRIAL REGISTRATION:; NCT03670706.
  • Brain connectivity-guided, Optimised theta burst transcranial magnetic stimulation to improve Central Pain Modulation in knee Osteoarthritis Pain (BoostCPM): Protocol of a pilot randomised clinical trial in a secondary care setting in the UK

    Lankappa, Sudheer (2023)
    Introduction Chronic pain is a common health problem that is not efficiently managed by standard analgesic treatments. There is evidence that treatment resistance may result from maladaptive brain changes in areas that are fundamental to the perception of pain. Knee osteoarthritis is one of the most prevalent causes of chronic pain and commonly associated with negative affect. Chronic knee osteoarthritis pain is also associated with altered right anterior insula functional connectivity. We posit that reversal of these brain circuit alterations may be critical to alleviate chronic pain and associated negative affect, and that this can be achieved through non-invasive neuromodulation techniques. Despite growing interest in non-invasive neuromodulation for pain relief and proven efficacy in depression, results in chronic pain are mixed with limited high-quality evidence for clinical and mechanistic efficacy. Limitations include patient heterogeneity, imprecision of target selection, uncertain blinding and protocols that may deliver pulses at subclinical efficacy. Methods and analysis We hence developed an optimised treatment protocol of connectivity-guided intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS) targeting the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex with accelerated delivery on four consecutive days (allowing 4 days within the same week as protocol variation) with five daily treatment sessions that will be piloted in a sham-controlled design in 45 participants with chronic knee pain. This pilot study protocol will assess feasibility, tolerability and explore mechanistic efficacy through serial functional/structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and quantitative sensory testing. Ethics and dissemination This pilot trial has been approved by the Ethics Committee Cornwall and Plymouth. Results of the pilot trial will be submitted to peer-reviewed journals, presented at research conferences and may be shared with participants and PPI/E advisors.
  • Acceptability of a nurse-led non-pharmacological complex intervention for knee pain: Nurse and patient views and experiences

    das Nair, Roshan (2022)
    Objectives The overall purpose of this research programme is to develop and test the feasibility of a complex intervention for knee pain delivered by a nurse, and comprising both non-pharmacological and pharmacological interventions. In this first phase, we examined the acceptability of the non-pharmacological component of the intervention; issues faced in delivery, and resolved possible challenges to delivery. Methods Eighteen adults with chronic knee pain were recruited from the community. The intervention comprised holistic assessment, education, exercise, weight-loss advice (where appropriate) and advice on adjunctive treatments such as hot/cold treatments, footwear modification and walking aids. After nurse training, the intervention was delivered in four sessions spread over five weeks. Participants had one to one semi-structured interview at the end of the intervention. The nurse was interviewed after the last visit of the last participant. These were audio recorded and transcribed verbatim. Themes were identified by one author through framework analysis of the transcripts, and cross-checked by another. Results Most participants found the advice from the nurse easy to follow and were satisfied with the package, though some felt that too much information was provided too soon. The intervention changed their perception of managing knee pain, learning that it can be improved with self-management. However, participants thought that the most challenging part of the intervention was fitting the exercise regime into their daily routine. The nurse found discussion of goal setting to be challenging. Conclusion The nurse-led package of care is acceptable within a research setting. The results are promising and will be applied in a feasibility randomised-controlled trial.
  • Fidelity assessment of nurse-led non-pharmacological package of care for knee pain in the package development phase of a feasibility randomised controlled trial based in secondary care: a mixed methods study

    das Nair, Roshan (2021)
    OBJECTIVES: To evaluate fidelity of delivery of a nurse-led non-pharmacological complex intervention for knee pain. SETTING: Secondary care. Single-centre study. STUDY DESIGN: Mixed methods study. PARTICIPANTS: Eighteen adults with chronic knee pain. INCLUSION CRITERIA: Age >40 years, knee pain present for longer than 3 months, knee pain for most days of the previous month, at least moderate pain in two of the five domains of Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index pain scale. INTERVENTIONS: Nurse-led non-pharmacological intervention comprising assessment, education, exercise, use of hot/cold treatments, footwear modification, walking aids and weight-loss advice (if required). OUTCOMES: Primary: fidelity of delivery of intervention, secondary: nurses' experience of delivering intervention. METHODS: Each intervention session with every participant was video recorded and formed part of fidelity assessment. Fidelity checklists were completed by the research nurse after each session and by an independent researcher, after viewing the video-recordings blinded to nurse ratings. Fidelity scores (%), percentage agreement and 95% Confidence Intervals (CI) were calculated. Two semi-structured interviews were conducted with the research nurse. RESULTS: Fourteen participants completed all visits. 62 treatment sessions took place. Nurse self-report and assessor video rating scores for all 62 treatment sessions were included in fidelity assessment. Overall fidelity was higher on nurse self-report (97.7%) than on objective video-rating (84.2%). Percentage agreement between nurse self-report and video-rating was 73.3% (95% CI 71.3 to 75.3). Fidelity was lowest for advice on footwear and walking aids. The nurse reported difficulty advising on thermal treatments, footwear and walking aids, and did not feel confident negotiating achievable and realistic goals with participants. CONCLUSIONS: A trained research nurse can deliver most components of a non-pharmacological intervention for knee pain to a high degree of fidelity. Future research should assess intervention fidelity in a routine clinical setting, and examine its clinical and cost-effectiveness. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NCT03670706.
  • The Central Aspects of Pain in the Knee (CAP-Knee) questionnaire; a mixed-methods study of a self-report instrument for assessing central mechanisms in people with knee pain

    das Nair, Roshan (2021)
    Objectives: Pain is the prevailing symptom of knee osteoarthritis. Central sensitisation creates discordance between pain and joint pathology. We previously reported a Central Pain Mechanisms trait derived from eight discrete characteristics: Neuropathic-like pain, Fatigue, Cognitive-impact, Catastrophising, Anxiety, Sleep disturbance, Depression, and Pain distribution. We here validate and show that an 8-item questionnaire, Central Aspects of Pain in the Knee (CAP-Knee) is associated both with sensory- and affective- components of knee pain severity. Methods: Participants with knee pain were recruited from the Investigating Musculoskeletal Health and Wellbeing study in the East Midlands, UK. CAP-Knee items were refined following cognitive interviews. Psychometric properties were assessed in 250 participants using Rasch-, and factor-analysis, and Cronbach's alpha. Intra-class correlation coefficients tested repeatability. Associations between CAP-Knee and McGill Pain questionnaire pain severity scores were assessed using linear regression. Results: CAP-Knee targeted the knee pain sample well. Cognitive interviews indicated that participants interpreted CAP-Knee items in diverse ways, which aligned to their intended meanings. Fit to the Rasch model was optimised by rescoring each item, producing a summated score from 0 to 16. Internal consistency was acceptable (Cronbach's alpha = 0.74) and test–retest reliability was excellent (ICC2,1 = 0.91). Each CAP-Knee item contributed uniquely to one discrete ‘Central Mechanisms trait’ factor. High CAP-Knee scores associated with worse overall knee pain intensity, and with each of sensory- and affective- McGill Pain Questionnaire scores. Conclusion: CAP-Knee is a simple and valid self-report questionnaire, which measures a single ‘Central Mechanisms’ trait, and may help identify and target centrally-acting treatments aiming to reduce the burden of knee pain.
  • East Midlands knee pain multiple randomised controlled trial cohort study: cohort establishment and feasibility study protocol

    das Nair, Roshan (2020)
    INTRODUCTIONKnee pain due to osteoarthritis (OA) is a common cause of disability. The UK National Institute for Health and Care Excellence OA guidelines recommend education, exercise and weight loss advice (if overweight) as core interventions before pharmacological adjuncts. However, implementation of these in primary care is often suboptimal. This study aims to develop a complex intervention with non-pharmacological and pharmacological components that can be delivered by nurses. The feasibility and acceptability of the intervention, and feasibility of undertaking a future cohort randomised controlled trial (RCT) will be explored.METHODS AND ANALYSISIn phase 1, we will develop a training programme for nurses and evaluate the fidelity and acceptability of the non-pharmacological element of the intervention. Fidelity checklists completed by the nurse will be compared with video analysis of the treatment sessions. Patients and nurses will be interviewed to determine the acceptability of the intervention and explore challenges to intervention delivery. The non-pharmacological component will be modified based on the findings. In phase 2, we will assess the feasibility of conducting a cohort RCT comprising both the pharmacological and modified non-pharmacological components. We will compare three groups: group A will receive the non-pharmacological components delivered before pharmacological components; group B will receive pharmacological components followed by the non-pharmacological components; and group C (control arm) will continue to receive usual care. Study outcomes will be collected at three time points: baseline, 13 and 26 weeks after randomisation. Qualitative interviews will be conducted with a sample of participants from each of the two active intervention arms.ETHICS AND DISSEMINATIONThis protocol was approved by the East Midlands-Derby Research Ethics Committee (18/EM/0288) and registered at (protocol v4.0, 10/02/2020). The study will be reported in accordance with the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials guidance and standards. The results will be submitted for publication in peer-reviewed academic journals.TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBERNCT03670706.
  • Oligodendrogliogenesis and axon remyelination after traumatic spinal cord injuries in animal studies: A systematic review

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2019)
    Extensive oligodendrocyte death after acute traumatic spinal cord injuries (TSCI) leads to axon demyelination and subsequently may leave axons vulnerable to degeneration. Despite the present evidence showing spontaneous remyelination after TSCI the cellular origin of new myelin and the time course of the axon ensheatment/remyelination remained controversial issue. In this systematic review the trend of oligodendrocyte death after injury as well as the extent and the cellular origin of oligodendrogliogenesis were comprehensively evaluated. The study design was based on Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA)-guided systematic review. PubMed and EMBASE were searched with no temporal or linguistic restrictions. Also, hand-search was performed in the bibliographies of relevant articles. Non-interventional animal studies discussing different types of myelinating cells including oligodendrocytes, Schwann cells and oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) were evaluated. The extent of oligodendrocyte death, oligodendrocyte differentiation and remyelination were the pathophysiological outcome measures. We found 12,359 studies, 34 of which met the inclusion criteria. The cumulative evidence shows extensive oligodendrocytes cell death during the first week post-injury (pi). OPCs and peripheral invading Schwann cells are the dominant cells contributing in myelin formation. The maximum OPCs proliferation was observed at around 2 weeks pi and oligodendrogliogenesis continues at later stages until the number of oligodendrocytes return to normal tissue by one month pi. Taken together, the evidence in animals reveals the potential role for endogenous myelinating cells in the axon ensheathment/remyelination after TSCI and this can be the target of pharmacotherapy to induce oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelin formation post-injury.
  • Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty for metastatic spinal lesions: A systematic review

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2017)
    INTRODUCTION: The spine is the most common site of bone metastases. Vertebroplasty (VP) and kyphoplasty (KP) have been proposed as potential minimally invasive therapeutic options for metastatic spinal lesion (MSL) pain. However, the efficacy of VP and KP on MSL pain is currently unclear. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess the effects of VP and KP compared with each other, usual care, or other treatments on pain, disability, and quality of life following MSL. METHODS: We included randomized controlled trials and prospective nonrandomized controlled clinical trials assessing VP or KP for the treatment of pain following MSL without cord compression. We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, PubMed, and CENTRAL. RESULTS: The literature search revealed 387 citations. Of these, 9 trials met all eligibility criteria and were included in the qualitative analysis. In total, there were 622 patients enrolled in the trials and of them 432 were in the surgical treatment group (92 received KP, 97 received VP, 134 received VP and chemotherapy, 68 received VP and radiotherapy, and 41 received Kiva implant) and 190 were in the nonsurgical treatment group (83 received chemotherapy, 46 received radiotherapy, and 61 received other treatment). Using the grading of recommendations assessment, development and evaluation approach, pain (low-quality evidence) and functional scores (very low-quality evidence) improved more with VP plus chemotherapy than with chemotherapy alone (pain: mean difference, -3.01; 95% confidence interval, -3.21 to -2.80; functional score: mean difference, 15.46; 95% confidence interval, 13.58-17.34). KP seemed to lead to significantly greater improvement in pain, disability, and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) compared with nonsurgical management. VP plus Iodine-125 seemed to lead to significantly greater improvement in pain and disability in comparison with VP alone. VP plus radiochemotherapy resulted in better pain relief and HRQoL postoperatively in comparison with routine radiochemotherapy. There was low-quality evidence to prove that surgical treatment significantly decreases pain, and improves functional score and HRQoL following MSL in comparison with nonsurgical management. CONCLUSION: On the basis of the analysis of currently published trial data, it is unclear whether VP for MSL provides benefits over KP. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Level 2.
  • Incidence of traumatic spinal cord injury worldwide: A systematic review

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2015)
    Purpose: Traumatic spinal cord injuries (TSCI) are among the most devastating conditions in developed and developing countries, which can be prevented. The situation of TSCI around the world is not well understood which complicates the preventive policy decision making in fight against TSCI. This study was aimed to gather the available information about incidence of TSCI around the world. Methods: A systematic search strategy was designed and run in Medline and EMBASE, along with extensive grey literature search, personal communications, website searching, and reference checking of related papers. Results: Overall, 133 resources including 101 papers, 17 trauma registries, 6 conference proceedings, 5 books, 2 theses and 2 personal communication data were retrieved. Data were found for 41 individual countries. The incidence of TSCI ranges from 3.6 to 195.4 patients per million around the world. Australia, Canada, US, and high-income European countries have various valuable reports of TSCI, while African and Asian countries lack the appropriate epidemiologic data on TSCI. Conclusion: Data of epidemiologic information in TSCI are available for 41 countries of the world, which are mostly European and high-income countries. Researches and efforts should be made to gather information in developing and low-income countries to plan appropriate cost-effective preventive strategies in fight against TSCI. © 2014, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.
  • Evidence-based prevention and treatment of osteoporosis after spinal cord injury: a systematic review

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2017)
    PURPOSE: Spinal cord injury (SCI) results in accelerated bone mineral density (BMD) loss and disorganization of trabecular bone architecture. The mechanisms underlying post-SCI osteoporosis are complex and different from other types of osteoporosis. Findings of studies investigating efficacy of pharmacological or rehabilitative interventions in SCI-related osteoporosis are controversial. The aim of this study was to review the literature pertaining to prevention and evidence-based treatments of SCI-related osteoporosis. METHODS: In this systematic review, MEDLINE, EMBASE, PubMed, and the Cochrane Library were used to identify papers from 1946 to December 31, 2015. The search strategy involved the following keywords: spinal cord injury, osteoporosis, and bone loss. RESULTS: Finally, 56 studies were included according to the inclusion criteria. Only 16 randomized controlled trials (involving 368 patients) were found. We found following evidences for effectiveness of bisphosphonates in prevention of BMD loss in acute SCI: very low-quality evidence for clodronate and etidronate, low-quality evidence for alendronate, and moderate-quality evidence for zoledronic acid. Low-quality evidence showed no effectiveness for tiludronate. In chronic SCI cases, we found low-quality evidence for effectiveness of vitamin D3 analogs combined with 1-alpha vitamin D2. However, low-quality inconsistent evidence exists for alendronate. For non-pharmacologic interventions, very low-quality evidence exists for effectiveness of standing with or without treadmill walking in acute SCI. Other low-quality evidences indicated that electrical stimulation, tilt-table standing, and ultrasound provide no significant effects. Very low-quality evidence did not show any benefit for low-intensity (3 days per week) cycling with functional electrical stimulator in chronic SCI. CONCLUSIONS: No recommendations can be made from this review, regarding overall low quality of evidence as a result of high risk of bias, low sample size in most of the studies, and notable heterogeneity in type of intervention, outcome measurement, and duration of treatment. Therefore, future high-quality RCT studies with higher sample sizes and more homogeneity are strongly recommended to provide high-quality evidence and make applicable recommendations for prevention and treatment of SCI-related bone loss.
  • Assistive devices, hip precautions, environmental modifications and training to prevent dislocation and improve function after hip arthroplasty

    Sands, Gina (2016)
    Background: Total hip arthroplasty (THA) is one of the most common orthopaedic operations performed worldwide. Painful osteoarthritis of the hip is the primary indication for THA. Following THA, people have conventionally been provided with equipment, such as raised toilet seats and chairs, and educated to avoid activities that could cause the hip joint to be in a position of flexion over 90 degrees, or adduction or rotation past the midline. These aspects of occupational therapy have been advocated to reduce the risks of prosthesis dislocation. However, the appropriateness of these recommendations has been questioned. Objectives: To assess the effects of provision of assistive devices, education on hip precautions, environmental modifications and training in activities of daily living (ADL) and extended ADL (EADL) for people undergoing THA. Search methods: We searched MEDLINE (1946 to April 2016), EMBASE (1947 to April 2016), the Cochrane Library including CENTRAL (Issue 4 of 12, 2016), Database of Reviews of Effects (DARE), Health Technology Assessment (HTA), Economic Evaluations Database (EED), CINAHL, PEDro and CIRRIE from inception to April 2016. In addition we checked Controlled Clinical Trials,, the National Institutes of Health Trial Registry, the World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (WHO ICTRP) and the OpenGrey database from inception to April 2016. Selection criteria: We included randomised controlled trials (RCTs), quasi-RCTs and cluster-RCTs that evaluated the effectiveness of the provision of assistive devices, education on hip precautions, environmental modifications, or training in ADL and EADL for people undergoing THA. The main outcomes of interest were pain, function, health-related quality of life (HRQOL), global assessment of treatment success, reoperation rate, hip dislocation and adverse events. Data collection and analysis: We used standard methodological procedures recognised by Cochrane. We conducted a systematic literature search using several databases and contacted corresponding authors, appraised the evidence using the Cochrane risk of bias tool, analysed the data using a narrative analysis approach (as it was not possible to conduct a meta-analysis due to heterogeneity in interventions), and interpreted all outcomes using the GRADE approach. Main results: We included three trials with a total of 492 participants who had received 530 THA. The evidence presented with a high risk of performance, detection and reporting bias. One study (81 participants) compared outcomes for participants randomised to the provision of hip precautions, equipment and functional restrictions versus no provision of hip precautions, equipment or functional restrictions. Due to the quality of evidence being very low, we are uncertain if the provision of hip precautions, equipment and functional restrictions improved function measured using the Harris Hip Score at 12 month follow-up, or health-related quality of life (HRQOL) measured by the Short Form-12 at four week follow-up, compared to not providing this. There were no incidences of hip dislocation or adverse events in either group during the initial 12 postoperative months. The study did not measure pain score, global assessment of treatment success or total adverse events. One study (265 participants; 303 THAs) evaluated the provision of hip precautions with versus without the prescription of postoperative equipment and restrictions to functional activities. Due to the quality of evidence being very low, we are uncertain if perceived satisfaction in the rate of recovery differed in people who were not prescribed postoperative equipment and restrictions (135/151 satisfied) compared to those prescribed equipment and restrictions (113/152) (risk ratio (RR) 0.83, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.75 to 0.93; 265 participants, one trial; number needed to treat for an additional beneficial outcome (NNTB) = 7). Due to the low quality evidence, we are uncertain if the incidence of hip dislocation differed between participants provided with hip precautions with (1/152) compared to without providing equipment or restrictions post-THA (0/151) (RR 2.98, 95% CI 0.12 to 72.59). The study did not measure pain, function, HRQOL, re-operation rates or total adverse events. One study (146 participants) investigated the provision of an enhanced postoperative education and rehabilitation service on hospital discharge to promote functional ADL versus a conventional rehabilitation intervention in the community. This study was of very low quality evidence. We were uncertain if the provision of enhanced postoperative education and rehabilitation improved function at six months follow-up, when assessed using the Objective and Subjective Functional Capability Index (146 participants, one trial; P > 0.05; no numerical results provided) compared to conventional rehabilitation. The study did not measure pain score, HRQOL, global assessment of treatment success, hip dislocation, re-operation rate or total adverse events. Authors' conclusions: Very low quality evidence is available from single trials, thus we are uncertain if hip precautions with or without the addition of equipment and functional restrictions are effective in preventing dislocation and improving outcomes after THA. There is also insufficient evidence to support or refute the adoption of a postoperative community rehabilitation programme consisting of functional reintegration and education compared to conventional rehabilitation strategies based on functional outcomes. Further high-quality trials are warranted to assess the outcomes of different occupational therapy interventions both in the short and longer-term for those who undergo THA. An assessment of the impact of such interventions on pain and restriction on personal ADL, EADL and instrumental ADL is needed, and also of functional integration-type interventions rather than just hip precautions, equipment and restrictions. Copyright © 2016 The Cochrane Collaboration. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
  • Minimally invasive discectomy versus microdiscectomy/open discectomy for symptomatic lumbar disc herniation

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2014)
    Background Microdiscectomy or open discectomy (MD/OD) are the standard procedures for symptomatic lumbar disc herniation and they involve removal of the portion of the intervertebral disc compressing the nerve root or spinal cord (or both) with or without the aid of a headlight loupe or microscope magnification. Potential advantages of newer minimally invasive discectomy (MID) procedures over standard MD/OD include less blood loss, less postoperative pain, shorter hospitalisation and earlier return to work. Objectives To compare the benefits and harms of MID versus MD/OD for management of lumbar intervertebral discopathy. Search methods We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) (November 2013), MEDLINE (1946 to November 2013) and EMBASE (1974 to November 2013) and applied no language restrictions. We also contacted experts in the field for additional studies and reviewed reference lists of relevant studies. Selection criteria We selected randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and quasi-randomised controlled trials (QRCTs) that compared MD/OD with a MID (percutaneous endoscopic interlaminar or transforaminal lumbar discectomy, transmuscular tubular microdiscectomy and automated percutaneous lumbar discectomy) for treatment of adults with lumbar radiculopathy secondary to discopathy. We evaluated the following primary outcomes: pain related to sciatica or low back pain (LBP) as measured by a visual analogue scale, sciatic specific outcomes such as neurological deficit of lower extremity or bowel/urinary incontinence and functional outcomes (including daily activity or return to work). We also evaluated the following secondary outcomes: complications of surgery, duration of hospital stay, postoperative opioid use, quality of life and overall participant satisfaction. Two authors checked data abstractions and articles for inclusion. We resolved discrepancies by consensus. Data collection and analysis We used standard methodological procedures expected by The Cochrane Collaboration. We used pre-developed forms to extract data and two authors independently assessed risk of bias. For statistical analysis, we used risk ratio (RR) for dichotomous outcomes and mean difference (MD) for continuous outcomes with 95% confidence intervals (CI) for each outcome. Main results We identified 11 studies (1172 participants). We assessed seven out of 11 studies as having high overall risk of bias. There was low-quality evidence that MID was associated with worse leg pain than MD/OD at follow-up ranging from six months to two years (e.g. at one year: MD 0.13, 95% CI 0.09 to 0.16), but differences were small (less than 0.5 points on a 0 to 10 scale) and did not meet standard thresholds for clinicallymeaningful differences. There was low-quality evidence that MID was associated with worse LBP than MD/OD at six-month follow-up (MD 0.35, 95% CI 0.19 to 0.51) and at two years (MD 0.54, 95% CI 0.29 to 0.79). There was no significant difference at one year (0 to 10 scale: MD 0.19, 95% CI -0.22 to 0.59). Statistical heterogeneity was small to high (I-2 statistic = 35% at six months, 90% at one year and 65% at two years). There were no clear differences between MID techniques and MD/OD on other primary outcomes related to functional disability (Oswestry Disability Index greater than six months postoperatively) and persistence of motor and sensory neurological deficits, though evidence on neurological deficits was limited by the small numbers of participants in the trials with neurological deficits at baseline. There was just one study for each of the sciatica-specific outcomes including the Sciatica Bothersomeness Index and the Sciatica Frequency Index, which did not need further analysis. For secondary outcomes, MID was associated with lower risk of surgical site and other infections, but higher risk of re-hospitalisation due to recurrent disc herniation. In addition, MID was associated with slightly lower quality of life (less than 5 points on a 100-point scale) on some measures of quality of life, such as some physical subclasses of the 36-item Short Form. Some trials found MID to be associated with shorter duration of hospitalisation than MD/OD, but results were inconsistent. Authors' conclusions MID may be inferior in terms of relief of leg pain, LBP and re-hospitalisation; however, differences in pain relief appeared to be small and may not be clinically important. Potential advantages of MID are lower risk of surgical site and other infections. MID may be associated with shorter hospital stay but the evidence was inconsistent. Given these potential advantages, more research is needed to define appropriate indications for MID as an alternative to standard MD/OD.
  • Posture cushion

    Cooper, D.; Lees, Jan (1985)
  • Myofascial release and beyond

    Childs, Ann; Robertson, Stuart (2009)
    This chapter contains sections titled: -Introduction to the fascial matrix -Aims of the MFR approach -Palpation philosophy and possible barriers to effectiveness -Exercises to enhance palpatory skills -Myofascial release techniques -A sustained stretch technique -Contraindications -Beyond the anatomy -An exploration of suggested rationale and their clinical implications -Evidence of effectiveness in clinical practice -So what do we feel with our hands? -Future implications -References -Further reading -Useful websites -Course information