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Papers: 5 Sep 2020 - 11 Sep 2020

Animal Studies

2020 Sep 09

Physiol Res

Effects of cyclic stretching exercise on long-lasting hyperalgesia, joint contracture, and muscle injury following cast immobilization in rats.


Hayashi K, Fukuyasu-Matsuo S, Inoue T, Fujiwara M, Asai Y, Iwata M, Suzuki S
Physiol Res. 2020 Sep 09.
PMID: 32901491.


The effects of exercise on mechanical hyperalgesia, joint contracture, and muscle injury resulting from immobilization are not completely understood. This study aimed to investigate the effects of cyclic stretching on these parameters in a rat model of chronic post-cast pain (CPCP). Seventeen 8-week-old Wistar rats were randomly assigned to (1) control group, (2) immobilization (CPCP) group, or (3) immobilization and stretching exercise (CPCP+STR) group. In the CPCP and CPCP+STR groups, both hindlimbs of each rat were immobilized in full plantar flexion with a plaster cast for a 4-week period. In the CPCP+STR group, cyclic stretching exercise was performed 6 days/week for 2 weeks, beginning immediately after cast removal prior to reloading. Although mechanical hyperalgesia in the plantar skin and calf muscle, ankle joint contracture, and gastrocnemius muscle injury were observed in both immobilized groups, these changes were significantly less severe in the CPCP+STR group than in the CPCP group. These results clearly demonstrate the beneficial effect of cyclic stretching exercises on widespread mechanical hyperalgesia, joint contracture, and muscle injury in a rat model of CPCP.