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Effects of local cryotherapy for recovery of delayed onset muscle soreness and strength following exercise-induced muscle damage: systematic review and meta-analysis

  • Nathalia Mello Nogueira
  • Cassiele Janina Felappi
  • Cláudia Silveira Lima
  • Diulian Muniz MedeirosEmail author
Review

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of the current study was to evaluate the effects of local cryotherapy on the main symptoms of exercise-induced muscle damage (EIMD) through a systematic literature review.

Methods

A search on Cochrane CENTRAL, MEDLINE (PubMed), Lilacs and PEDro databases was carried out from inception to March 2018. Studies that performed a protocol of muscle damage induction, and used local cryotherapy as intervention in comparison with control group/placebo were eligible. The studies should evaluate at least one of the outcomes of interest (delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) or muscle strength). Studies that did not evaluate any of the variables of interest or applied ice massage or other cooling modalities were excluded.

Results

The search identified 221 studies, in which 7 studies met the eligibility criteria and were included. There was a mean PEDro score of 7.28, and all studies were ranked as high methodological quality. Meta-analysis showed local cryotherapy does not seem to be effective to accelerate recovery of DOMS (− 0.11; 95% CI − 0.8 to 0.57; I2: 79%) or muscle strength (− 0.59; 95% CI − 2.89 to 1.71; I2: 0%) following EIMD.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the results showed that local cryotherapy does not seem to contribute for the improvement of DOMS and muscle weakness associated with EIMD.

Keywords

Eccentric contraction Eccentric protocol Creatine kinase Cold therapy 

Notes

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

The present study did not require ethical approval.

Informed consent

For this type of study, formal consent is not required.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia S.r.l., part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Escola de Educação Física, Fisioterapia e DançaUniversidade Federal do Rio Grande do SulPorto AlegreBrazil
  2. 2.Programa de pós graduação em Ciências da Reabilitação, Departamento de FisioterapiaUniversidade Federal de Ciências da Saúde de Porto AlegrePorto AlegreBrazil

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