Abstract

OBJECTIVE. In this study, we aimed to assess whether therapeutic taping for scapular stabilization affected scapulothoracic, glenohumeral, and humerothoracic joint function in children with brachial plexus birth palsy and scapular winging.

METHOD. Motion capture data were collected with and without therapeutic taping to assist the middle and lower trapezius in seven positions for 26 children. Data were compared with one-way multivariate analyses of variance.

RESULTS. With therapeutic taping, scapular winging decreased considerably in all positions except abduction. Additionally, there were increased glenohumeral cross-body adduction and internal rotation angles in four positions. The only change in humerothoracic function was an increase of 3° of external rotation in the external rotation position.

CONCLUSION. Therapeutic taping for scapular stabilization resulted in a small but statistically significant decrease in scapular winging. Overall performance of positions was largely unchanged. The increased glenohumeral joint angles with therapeutic taping may be beneficial for joint development; however, the long-term impact remains unknown.

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