Effects of dry needling (DNHS technique) on the contractile properties of spastic muscles in a patient with stroke: a case report

Sandra Calvo, Isabel Quintero and Pablo Herrero

Técnica DNHS®


Dry needling for hypertonia and spasticity (DNHS) is a technique used for decreasing hypertonia and spasticity and for the improvement of function in patients with damage to the central nervous system. There is limited evidence supporting the effectiveness of this technique on the basis of objective assessments. The aim of the present case report was to quantify the effects of dry needling (DNHS technique) on the contractile properties of spastic muscles in an individual with stroke. The DNHS technique was applied to a 50-year-old male 2.5 years after stroke who had a complaint of spasticity. The treated muscles were biceps brachii, triceps brachii, rectus femoris, semitendinosus, biceps femoris, medial gastrocnemius, and lateral gastrocnemius. Tensiomyography was used to assess maximal displacement (Dm) of treated muscles. We performed a preintervention and postintervention measurement and a follow-up measurement 3 weeks after intervention. After the application of the DNHS technique, a decrease in the level of local muscle stiffness was observed for all muscles after intervention and at the 3-week follow

up, quantified by an increase in Dm. The usefulness of tensiomyography for detecting changes in patients with spasticity correlated with clinical measures in this field requires further research to establish the reliability of the different parameters provided by the equipment.

International Journal of Rehabilitation Research 00:000–000 Copyright © 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.

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