The effect of a myo-fascial treatment technique on the mobility of the shoulder | The International Academy of Osteopathy IAO

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The effect of a myo-fascial treatment technique on the mobility of the shoulder


Author: Sandra Britt  
Supervisor: Gunther Barty, D.O Ost.

Background: Osteopathic mobilization techniques can bring about improvement of various functional body functions. Enhanced mobility of bones, joints, fasciae, inner organs, etc. presents a possible improvement. Paoletti maintains (Paoletti 2011: pp. 210) that his myo-fascial shoulder technique applied to the fasciae deltoidea. The study to be under consideration aims at examining the effectiveness of this technique with regard to the lateral lifting of the arm.

Method: This study is a randomized training study. Sixteen persons participated in this study. They all presented with fasciae cords in the fascia casing of the fasciae deltoidea that were noticeable palpitable and a limited active mobility of 0 - 90° gleno-humeral abduction. Patients were randomly assigned to an experimental group with standardized fascia treatment for the fasciae deltoidea or a control group which was required to “rest” for the length of the time of the study. Immediately before and after the intervention a standardized photographic image was made of the movement of the active gleno-humeral abduction.

Result: The experimental group shows a significant improvement of gleno-humeral abduction when compared to the control group. The improvement is evident regardless the age of the patients or the duration of their study-specific problem.

Conclusion: Paoletti’s (Paoletti 2011:pp. 210) myo-fascial shoulder technique markedly influences active shoulder mobility toward gleno-humeraler abduction. The technique may be used as mono-therapy so as to achieve at least rapid improvement of limited active gleno-humeral abduction. Further studies are necessary to determine how long the improved mobility will last and whether this technique is also appropriate to achieve long-term improvements in mobility. More research efforts are needed to define for which patients this technique will prove to be the most useful. In addition it might be beneficial to study the effectiveness of everyday ostheopathic so-called “holistic” body treatments.