The clinical effectiveness of a myofeedback-based teletreatment service in patients with non-specific neck and shoulder pain: a randomized controlled trial.

We investigated the effectiveness and efficiency of a four-week myofeedback-based teletreatment service in subjects with non-specific neck and shoulder pain. Subjects were recruited in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands and randomly allocated to the intervention or conventional care. Subjects in the intervention group received four weeks of myofeedback training. Pain intensity and disability were evaluated by questionnaires at baseline, immediately after four weeks of treatment and at follow-up 3 months later. To investigate efficiency, the time-investment of both therapists and patients were assessed. Seventy-one subjects were included in the study (36 in the intervention group and 35 in the conventional care group). Myofeedback-based teletreatment was at least as effective clinically as conventional care. Pain intensity and disability decreased after 4 weeks of treatment in both groups and part of the effect remained at 3 months’ follow-up. The teletreatment also increased efficiency for therapists by almost 20% and patients experienced the benefits of less travel time and travel costs by remote consultation.

Myofeedback-based teletreatment has the potential to ensure more efficient treatment for patients with non-specific neck and shoulder pain.

Kosterink SM, Huis in ‘t Veld RM, Cagnie B, Hasenbring M, Vollenbroek-Hutten MM. The clinical effectiveness of a myofeedback-based teletreatment service in patients with non-specific neck and shoulder pain: a randomized controlled trial. J Telemed Telecare. 2010;16(6):316-21

Neck Pain

Out of all 291 conditions studied in the Global Burden of Disease 2010 Study, neck pain ranked 4th highest in terms of disability and 21st in terms of overall burden.

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