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Effect of therapeutic ultrasound in patients after flexor tendon repair: A prospective randomized study

1 College of Physiotherapy, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, Punjab, India
2 Department of Neurology, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, Punjab, India
3 Department of Plastic Surgery, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, Punjab, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/pjiap.pjiap_9_22

CONTEXT: Injuries to the flexor tendons of the hand may not seem very complicated, but the rehab may take months. Adjunction of the existing protocols with therapeutic ultrasound at the early phase may speed up the recovery. The high prevalence of these injuries indicates the need for more studies in the area to improve tendon repair by reducing recovery time. AIMS: To evaluate the role of ultrasound therapy in improving the range of motion (ROM) and grip strength postflexor tendon repair surgery. SETTINGS AND DESIGN: A prospective study was conducted in the department of physiotherapy in a tertiary hospital in Ludhiana. METHODS: This was a prospective study. Patients with flexor tendon injury postsurgical repair, 1-week postoperative were the target population. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: The mean change in ROM and grip strength was analyzed in both the intervention and the control groups using paired t-test in SPSS software. RESULTS: The mean change in ROM before and after the intervention was19.2° and 32.02° for distal inter-phalangeal (DIP) joints and 14.3° and 23.14° for proximal inter-phalangeal (PIP) joints in the control and the experimental groups, respectively. The P value for ROM comparison was 0.0082, which was very statistically significant. The mean change in grip strength was measured as 73.2 lbs and 81 lbs in the control and experimental groups, respectively. The P value was 0.238, which was not significant at P < 0.05. CONCLUSION AND KEY MESSAGE: The use of therapeutic ultrasound in tendon repair significantly helps enhance the recovery of the active ROM of the DIP and the PIP joints when administered at an early stage. However, no significant change in grip strength was noted in this study.

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