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Effectiveness of Exercise Therapy on Gait Function in Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy Patients: A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials

Authors Melese H, Alamer A, Hailu Temesgen M, Kahsay G

Received 8 May 2020

Accepted for publication 2 July 2020

Published 5 August 2020 Volume 2020:13 Pages 2753—2764


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Antonio Brunetti

Haimanot Melese, Abayneh Alamer, Melaku Hailu Temesgen, Gebresilassie Kahsay

Department of Physiotherapy, School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences and Ayder Comprehensive Specialized Hospital, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia

Correspondence: Haimanot Melese Tel +2510927608383
Fax +2510344416681/91

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to review the current evidence on the effectiveness of exercise therapy on gait function in patients with diabetic peripheral neuropathy. A comprehensive search of literature published between October 2010 and May 2020 was conducted using the following electronic databases; PubMed, AMED, CINAHL, ScienceDirect, Cochrane Library, PEDro and Google Scholar. Randomized control trials conducted to determine the effectiveness of exercise therapy on gait function in patients with diabetic neuropathy were included in this review. Non-English language published papers were excluded. This review was done in compliance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Data extraction and risk of bias assessment of the studies were carried out independently by two authors. The methodological quality of the studies was evaluated using the PEDro scale and GRADE approach. The overall methodological quality of studies rated from moderate to high. Meta-analysis was not carried out due to the heterogeneity of included trials. The primary outcome measures of gait functions were the six-minute walk test, 10-meter walk test and Tinetti scale. Nine randomized controlled trials with 370 participants were analyzed. Out of them, eight studies proved its effectiveness on gait function on individuals with diabetic peripheral neuropathy. The finding of this study suggested that multi-component exercise therapy consisted of strength, ROM exercise, balance, flexibility and stretching exercises, circuit exercise training, and gait training found to enhance gait function for individuals suffering with diabetic peripheral neuropathy compared to control groups.

Keywords: exercise therapy, diabetic pain, functional training, gait, peripheral neuropathy, systematic review

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