Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Scandinavian Journal of Pain

Official Journal of the Scandinavian Association for the Study of Pain

Editor-in-Chief: Werner, Mads

CiteScore 2018: 0.85

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.494
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.427

See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 16, Issue 1


Efficacy of dry needling on latent myofascial trigger points in male subjects with neck/shoulders musculoskeletal pain. A case series

A.M. Heredia-Rizo / I. Navarro-Carmona
  • Physiotherapy Department, Faculty of Nursing, Physiotherapy and Podiatry, University of Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ F. Piña-Pozo
Published Online: 2017-07-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sjpain.2017.04.029



To assess the impact of dry needling on neural mechanosensitivity and grip strength in male subjects with a history of persistent pain in the neck/shoulder area.


Case series study. Eight male subjects (mean age 25±6.24 years) with a recurrent history of bilateral neck/shoulder pain for at least 6 months, and with symptoms provoked by neck/shoulder postures or movement were recruited from a University-based clinical research center. Measurements were taken at baseline, immediately after intervention, and fifteen days later, of the pressure pain threshold (PPT) over the median, ulnar, and radial nerves, and the tibialis anterior (TA) muscle. Secondary measures included free-pain grip strength with a hydraulic dynamometer. A therapist assessed the presence of latent (not spontaneously painful, but painful upon palpation) myofascial trigger points (MTrP) over the scalene, subclavius, pectoralis minor, infraspinatus and serratus posterior superior muscles, on the most painful side. Deep dry needling was then performed on the latent MtrP by quickly inserting and partially removing the needle from the MTrP until 2 local twitch responses were provoked.


PPT over the nerve trunks significantly increased after intervention (p < 0.05 for all locations). These changes remained constant in the second assessment, both in the treated (p < 0.001 for median and ulnar nerves, and p = 0.004 for radial nerve), and the non-treated upper limb (median nerve p < 0.001, ulnar nerve p = 0.003, and radial nerve p = 0.006). No statistical significance was found for PPT over the TA muscle (p > 0.05) or for grip strength (p = 0.153 on the treated side, and p = 0.564 on the non-treated upper limb).


Dry needling on the cervicothoracic and shoulder areas may help to improve peripheral neural features over the brachial plexus nerve trunks in subjects with recurrent neck/shoulder pain. No effect was observed for grip strength.

About the article

Published Online: 2017-07-01

Published in Print: 2017-07-01

Citation Information: Scandinavian Journal of Pain, Volume 16, Issue 1, Pages 174–174, ISSN (Online) 1877-8879, ISSN (Print) 1877-8860, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sjpain.2017.04.029.

Export Citation

© 2017 Scandinavian Association for the Study of Pain.Get Permission

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in