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Background: The proximal insertional disorder of the plantar fascia is plantar fasciosis. Although plantar fasciosis is frequently seen by different health-care providers, indistinctness of etiology and pathogenesis is still present. A variety of interventions are seen in clinical practice. Taping constructions are frequently used for the treatment of plantar fasciosis. However, a systematic review assessing the efficacy of this therapy modality is not available.
Methods: To assess the efficacy of a taping construction as an intervention or as part of an intervention in patients with plantar fasciosis on pain and disability, controlled trials were searched for in CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Cochrane CENTRAL, and PEDro using a specific search strategy. The Physiotherapy Evidence Database scale was used to judge methodological quality. Clinical relevance was assessed with five specific questions. A best-evidence synthesis consisting of five levels of evidence was applied for qualitative analysis.
Results: Five controlled trials met the inclusion criteria. Three trials with high methodological quality and of clinical relevance contributed to the best-evidence synthesis. The findings were strong evidence of pain improvement at 1-week follow-up, inconclusive results for change in level of disability in the short term, and indicative findings that the addition of taping on stretching exercises has a surplus value.
Conclusions: There is limited evidence that taping can reduce pain in the short term in patients with plantar fasciosis. The effect on disability is inconclusive. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 100(1): 41–51, 2010)