Table 7

Mean values of pain scales and treatment effect for pain of isometric exercise versus control (isotonic exercise, ice or no treatment): studies assessing outcomes in the short-term (up to 12 weeks)

Acute/chronicTreatment modesTendon affectedFirst author (year)Pain scaleScale rangeIsometric group pain scoreControl group pain scoreMean treatment effect for pain (2–1) – (4–3) (95% CI)P value <0.05
Baseline (1)Longest follow-up (2)Baseline (3)Longest follow-up (4)
AcuteCombined isometric exercise/ice therapy versus ice therapyRotator cuffParle (2017)32VAS0–−0.1 (N/A)No
Isometric exercise versus iceRotator cuffParle (2017)32VAS0–−0.8 (N/A)No
Dupuis (2018)31BPI0–−0.1 (−1.2 to 1)No
ChronicIsometric versus isotonic exercisePatellarvan Ark (2016)36NRS0–106.345.52−0.5* (−2.6 to 1.6)No
Greater trochanteric pain syndromeClifford (2019)17NRS0– (−0.7 to 1.7)No
ChronicCombined isometric/isotonic exercise versus isotonic exerciseWrist extensorsStasinopoulos (2017)33VAS0–−1.3 (−0.8 to −1.9)Yes
  • CIs have been calculated (see Statistical analysis section).

  • *Values at baseline and follow-up are median and not mean; therefore, the 0.5 value (also median) reported by the authors cannot be obtained from the calculation.

  • BPI, Brief Pain Inventory; N/A, not applicable; NRS, Numeric Rating Scale; VAS, Visual Analogue Scale.