What is the best treatment for iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS)?
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Corticosteroid injections are effective in decreasing running pain due to acute ITBS about 2 weeks after treatment. (SOR: B, based on 1 small RCT.) For chronic ITBS, a combination of NSAIDs, analgesic medications, and physical therapy is more effective in improving total running time and distance than physical therapy alone, although pain reduction is similar. (SOR: B, based on 1 small RCT.) For subacute ITBS, phonophoresis is better than immobilization for faster recovery. (SOR: B, based on 1 small RCT.) Deep transverse friction massage does not produce any additional benefit to a standard physical therapy program of ultrasound, rest, icing, and stretching exercises. (SOR: B, based on 1 small RCT.
Evidence Based Practice 15(3): 12.