PROPRIOCEPTIVE TRAINING FOR THE PREVENTION OF ANKLE SPRAINS: AN EVIDENCE-BASED REVIEW

Review written by Sandesh Rangnekar info

BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

Ankle sprains are one of the most common sport-related injuries seen in high impact sports such as basketball, football, soccer, handball, volleyball and netball. Such injuries cause pain, dysfunction, loss of time from play and monetary burden. Once injured, there is also a higher chance of recurrent sprains and this often leads to further impairment and chronic instability of the ankle. The aim of this review was to understand if the exclusive use of proprioceptive training helped reduce first time or recurrent incidence of ankle sprains in athletic population.

METHODS

The authors conducted an extensive search of the literature on this topic available in MEDLINE, CINAHL, SPORTDiscus and PEDro databases. Additionally, the reference lists of the obtained studies were screened to acquire more studies. The inclusion criterion for the studies to be reviewed was:

  • Moderate to high level randomized controlled trial (RCT) with a score of > 4/10 on the Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) scale.
  • Recreational and/or professional athletes, with or without a history of previous ankle injury.
  • Intervention group received proprioception training only, while the control group did not receive any.
  • Rate of ankle sprains as the main outcome.
  • Studies published in English language only.

Studies were independently reviewed by two authors to ascertain their eligibility. Relative risk calculation was done after obtaining data on the number of participants, intervention, frequency, duration, follow-up period and rate of injury. The authors conducted three meta-analyses to assess the relative risk using the following categories: 1) Proprioceptive training used regardless of history of ankle sprains. (7studies); 2) Proprioceptive training used to prevent recurrence of ankle sprains. (4 studies); 3) Proprioceptive training used for those with no history of ankle sprains (2studies).

RESULTS

7 studies were included in this review for a total of 3726 participants. The average score of the studies on PEDro scale was 5.4/10. Of these trials, the quality of three articles was deemed excellent (score of 6 or 7),

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