Objective. To investigate RCTs that reported the effects of Radial ShockWave Therapy (RSWT) versus traditional physiotherapy on pain, shoulder articular function and quality of life of patients suffering by tendinopathy of the shoulder. Data sources. Studies were comprehensively searched, without language restrictions, on PubMed, Embase, PEdro, Cochrane Controlled Trials Register, the Cochrane. Possible studies from reference lists of articles and review were cross-checked. Study selection. Randomized controlled trials from 2006 to present were included. Two reviewers conducted the selection independently. Data extraction. Two reviewers assessed the quality of data. Disagreements in extraction were settled by consulting a third and fourth reviewers to reach a consensus. Data synthesis. Five studies with 475 participants were included in the network meta-analysis that used a random-effect model to investigate the mean difference of pooled effect sizes of the visual analog scale, Constant-Murley score combined with UCLA, and SPADI score. Conclusions. Compared to control groups, RSWT resulted an improvement in pain -0.24 (95% CI: -0.43 to -0.05 Z=2.45 p<0.05), an increase of Constant/UCLA score 4.72 (95% CI: 4.03 to 5.4 Z=13.5 p<0.05) and a decrease in SPADI scale -6.76 (95% CI: –13.3 to –0.48 Z=2.11 p<0.05). Despite the small number of the studies, seems that RSWT can be more effective in pain, shoulder articular function and quality of life of patients with tendinopathy of the shoulder.
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