Reliability of Physical Examination for Diagnosis of Myofascial Trigger Points: A Systematic Review of the Literature

  title={Reliability of Physical Examination for Diagnosis of Myofascial Trigger Points: A Systematic Review of the Literature},
  author={Nicholas Lucas and Petra Macaskill and Les M. Irwig and Robert W Moran and Nikolai Bogduk},
  journal={The Clinical Journal of Pain},
Background Trigger points are promoted as an important cause of musculoskeletal pain. There is no accepted reference standard for the diagnosis of trigger points, and data on the reliability of physical examination for trigger points are conflicting. Objectives To systematically review the literature on the reliability of physical examination for the diagnosis of trigger points. Methods MEDLINE, EMBASE, and other sources were searched for articles reporting the reliability of physical… 

Diagnostic Applications of Ultrasonography in Myofascial Trigger Points: A Scoping Review and Critical Appraisal of Literature

Low-medium risk of bias evidence is found in support of ultrasonography for MTrP investigations and the back and trapezius muscles were the most studied locations.

Interrater Agreement of Manual Palpation for Identification of Myofascial Trigger Points: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Use of manual palpation for identification of myofascial trigger points is unreliable, and future investigation should focus on integration with more reliable techniques.

The prevalence of myofascial trigger points in neck and shoulder-related disorders: a systematic review of the literature

Limited evidence was found supporting the high prevalence of active and latent MTrPs in patients with neck or shoulder disorders, but point prevalence estimates were based on a small number of studies with very low sample sizes and with design limitations that increased risk of bias within included studies.

Criteria Used for the Diagnosis of Myofascial Trigger Points in Clinical Trials on Physical Therapy

An updated systematic review of diagnostic criteria for myofascial trigger points (MTrPs) used in clinical trials of physical therapy interventions from 2007 to 2019 found a lack of transparency in the reporting of MTrP diagnostic criteria is present in the literature.

Assessment of Myofascial Trigger Points via Imaging

Considering the evidence on efficacy, cost, ease of use and time constraints, US-based methods are currently the imaging modalities of choice for MPS/MTrP assessment.

Reliability of trigger points evaluation in the lower leg muscles.

Physical examination is a reliable method of trigger point evaluation in lower leg muscles, and it can be used as a diagnostic method fortrigger point evaluation.

An update of the appraisal of the accuracy and utility of cervical discography in chronic neck pain.

Cervical provocation discography may be an important evaluation tool in certain contexts to identify a subset of patients with chronic neck pain secondary to intervertebral disc disorders, according to the current systematic review.



Variability of Criteria Used to Diagnose Myofascial Trigger Point Pain Syndrome—Evidence From a Review of the Literature

Until reliable diagnostic criteria have been established, there is a need for greater transparency in research papers on how a case of MTrP pain syndrome is defined, and claims for effective interventions in treating the condition should be viewed with caution.

Interrater Reliability of Palpation of Myofascial Trigger Points in Three Shoulder Muscles

Preliminary evidence that MTrP palpation is a reliable and, therefore, potentially useful diagnostic tool in the diagnosis of myofascial pain in patients with non-traumatic shoulder pain is provided.

Intertester reliability of judgments of the presence of trigger points in patients with low back pain.

The usefulness of examining for the presence of trigger points in patients with low back pain should be questioned and the low Kappa and Ppos values suggest different therapists are unable to reliably determine when a trigger point is present in a patient with LBP.

Test-retest reliability of myofascial trigger point detection in patients with rotator cuff tendonitis

The presence or absence of the taut band, spot tenderness, jump sign and pain recognition was highly reliable between sessions and Referred pain and local twitch response reliability varied depending on the muscle being studied.