Physiotherapists certified in Integrated Dry Needling™ (IDN) use the application of trigger point dry needling in their practice following a thorough assessment of your problem or injury in order to get to the source of the dysfunction or pain. A management plan is created to address your injury or pain that most often includes other treatments such as manual (hands-on) therapy, exercise and education. Your injury or pain is treated as a whole as opposed to simply treating the “victim” of your pain or symptoms in isolation.
Physiotherapists who hold the Certificate of Integrated Dry Needling will often indicate that they’re trained in this approach by listing the credential “CIDN” following their name alongside other certifications they may have completed. Click here to find a physiotherapist certified in Integrated Dry Needling near you.
Effects of Dry Needling
Dry needling has been demonstrated to have a significant effect on muscle tone and myofascial trigger points. This occurs through mechanical, electrophysical, chemical and neurophysiological mechanisms. Most of these effects are dependent on eliciting a local twitch response at the trigger point.(4–7)
Trigger point dry needling appears to reduce myofascial pain, regardless of body region, at various points in time.” – Boyles et al, Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy, 2015(8)
Dry Needling can be especially effective for muscle pain and myofascial pain syndromes when combined with other physiotherapy techniques and treatments, including hands on care, exercise and education.(9)
Dry Needling treatment has been shown in the research to have positive effects on numerous musculoskeletal pains.
- Temporomandibular Joint (Jaw) Pain and Dysfunction (TMD)(10–12)
- Mechanical Neck Pain(7,13)
- Shoulder Pain(13,15)
- Low Back Pain(16)
- Plantar Fasciitis and Heel Pain(17,18)
- Muscle pain created by myofascial trigger points(8)
Other areas that demonstrate significant improvement clinically include:
- Rotator Cuff
- Lateral or Medial epicondylosis (Tennis Elbow, Golfer’s Elbow)
- Achilles Tendinopathy
- Hip Pain or Arthritis
- Knee Pain or Arthritis
- Radiculopathies (nerve pain)
Cagnie B, Dewitte V, Barbe T, Timmermans F, Delrue N, Meeus M. Physiologic effects of dry needling. Curr Pain Headache Rep. 2013 Aug;17(8):348.
Huang Y-T, Lin S-Y, Neoh C-A, Wang K-Y, Jean Y-H, Shi H-Y. Dry needling for myofascial pain: prognostic factors. J Altern Complement Med N Y N. 2011 Aug;17(8):755–62.
Kietrys DM, Palombaro KM, Mannheimer JS. Dry needling for management of pain in the upper quarter and craniofacial region. Curr Pain Headache Rep. 2014;18(8):437.
Mejuto-Vazquez MJ, Salom-Moreno J, Ortega-Santiago R, Truyols-Dominguez S, Fernandez-de-Las-Penas C. Short-term changes in neck pain, widespread pressure pain sensitivity, and cervical range of motion after the application of trigger point dry needling in patients with acute mechanical neck pain: a randomized clinical trial. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2014 Apr;44(4):252–60.
Boyles R, Fowler R, Ramsey D, Burrows E. Effectiveness of trigger point dry needling for multiple body regions: a systematic review. J Man Manip Ther. 2015 Dec;23(5):276–93.
Segura-Perez M, Hernandez-Criado MT, Calvo-Lobo C, Vega-Piris L, Fernandez-Martin R, Rodriguez-Sanz D. A Multimodal Approach for Myofascial Pain Syndrome: A Prospective Study. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2017 Aug;40(6):397–403.
Diracoglu D, Vural M, Karan A, Aksoy C. Effectiveness of dry needling for the treatment of temporomandibular myofascial pain: a double-blind, randomized, placebo controlled study. J Back Musculoskelet Rehabil. 2012;25(4):285–90.
Gonzalez-Perez L-M, Infante-Cossio P, Granados-Nunez M, Urresti-Lopez F-J. Treatment of temporomandibular myofascial pain with deep dry needling. Med Oral Patol Oral Cirugia Bucal. 2012 Sep 1;17(5):e781-785.
Fernandez-Carnero J, La Touche R, Ortega-Santiago R, Galan-del-Rio F, Pesquera J, Ge H-Y, et al. Short-term effects of dry needling of active myofascial trigger points in the masseter muscle in patients with temporomandibular disorders. J Orofac Pain. 2010 Winter;24(1):106–12.
Liu L, Huang Q-M, Liu Q-G, Ye G, Bo C-Z, Chen M-J, et al. Effectiveness of dry needling for myofascial trigger points associated with neck and shoulder pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2015 May;96(5):944–55.
France S, Bown J, Nowosilskyj M, Mott M, Rand S, Walters J. Evidence for the use of dry needling and physiotherapy in the management of cervicogenic or tension-type headache: a systematic review. Cephalalgia Int J Headache. 2014 Oct;34(12):994–1003.
Arias-Buria JL, Fernandez-de-Las-Penas C, Palacios-Cena M, Koppenhaver SL, Salom-Moreno J. Exercises and Dry Needling for Subacromial Pain Syndrome: a Randomized Parallel-Group Trial. J Pain Off J Am Pain Soc. 2016 Oct 5;
Koppenhaver SL, Walker MJ, Su J, McGowen JM, Umlauf L, Harris KD, et al. Changes in lumbar multifidus muscle function and nociceptive sensitivity in low back pain patient responders versus non-responders after dry needling treatment. Man Ther. 2015 Dec;20(6):769–76.
Cotchett MP, Munteanu SE, Landorf KB. Effectiveness of trigger point dry needling for plantar heel pain: a randomized controlled trial. Phys Ther. 2014 Aug;94(8):1083–94.
Morihisa R, Eskew J, McNamara A, Young J. DRY NEEDLING IN SUBJECTS WITH MUSCULAR TRIGGER POINTS IN THE LOWER QUARTER: A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW. Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2016 Feb;11(1):1–14.