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Is there any evidence for Kinesiotaping neurologically weak ankles?

Three Part Question

In [weak ankle dorsiflexors] is [kinesiotaping] effective at improving [strength and function]

Clinical Scenario

A five year old girl presents with mild vincristine neuropathy (peripheral neuropathy of common peroneal nerve) affecting bilateral Tibialis Anterior muscles. She is able to actively dorsiflex but walks with an affected gait. You wonder whether kinesiotaping would be of benefit to facilitate these muscles and retrain gait.

Search Strategy

AMED 1985-08/13; BNI 1992 -08/13; CINAHL 1981 – 08/13; MEDLINE 1950 – 08/13

{[weak ankle OR weak tibialis OR OR dropfoot .af OR common peroneal nerve OR common peroneal nerve OR weak ankle OR ankle dosiflexion OR tibialis anterior OR ankle flexion OR lower limb peripheral OR crural nerve OR crural nerve] AND [ kinesiotape.ti,ab OR k-tape.ti,ab OR kinesiology tape.ti,ab OR athletic tape.ti,ab OR rock tape.ti,ab OR kinesio tex tape.ti,ab OR elastic tape.ti,ab OR cure tape.ti,ab]}

Search Outcome

A total of two papers were found from the first two criteria. One paper was rejected due to being a small pilot study into a central nervous system disorder affecting the lower limbs.

Relevant Paper(s)

Author, date and country Patient group Study type (level of evidence) Outcomes Key results Study Weaknesses
SF Walsh
Single child – 2 year old - Kinesio tape - 2 strips (1 deltoid origin to insertion, 2 medial scapula border to deltoid insertion - 2-3 days tape on, 1-2 days off - 40 weeks of tape, decreasing use gradually - Parent education Case Report1. Function 1. functional use of UL – increased use observation through playCase Report Limited application to clinical scenario
2. Posture2.improved posture of scapula – observation and x-ray
3.RoM3. ROM – Mallett score
4.Muscle size1, 4. Improved muscle bulk - observation


The relevant paper had very limited application to the clinical scenario as it was used on acquired birth trauma to the upper limb. Its results are of limited significance. However good improvements were seen in one child and treatment ideas are applicable to our clinical scenario. Although a single study, the child’s physical recovery had reached a plateau in the year prior to this study and taping was the only new intervention therefore conclusion was surmised that new recovery due to taping. Further research into effect of kinesiotaping would be required.

Clinical Bottom Line

Based on the current best literature, there is insubstantial evidence (one case study) for kinesiotaping to improve neurologically weak ankle dorsiflexor function. The case study, however, demonstrated improvement could be possible and would therefore suggest the treatment may be worth trying with patients.


  1. SF Walsh Treatment of a brachial plexus injury using Kinesiotape and exercise. 2010; 26/7 490 – 496.