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Open Access Eight Months of Physical Training in Warm Water Improves Physical and Mental Health in Women with Fibromyalgia: A Randomized Controlled Trial

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Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of 8 months of supervised exercise therapy in warm water and its effects on the impact of fibromyalgia on physical and mental health and physical fitness in affected women.

Methods: Thirty women with fibromyalgia were randomly assigned to an exercise therapy group (n = 15) or a control group (inactive) (n = 15). The impact of fibromyalgia on physical and mental health was assessed using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire and the anxiety state with State-Trait Anxiety Inventory. Physical fitness was measured using the following tests: Canadian Aerobic Fitness; hand-grip dynamometry; 10-metre walking; 10-step stair-climbing and blind 1-leg stance.

Results: After 8 months of training, the exercise therapy group improved compared with the control group in terms of physical function (20%), pain (8%), stiffness (53%), anxiety (41%), depression (27%), Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire total scores (18%), State-Trait Anxiety Inventory score (22%), aerobic capacity (22%), balance (30%), functional capacity for walking (6%), stair-climbing with no extra weight (14%) and stair-climbing 10 kg-weighted (25%).

Conclusion: Eight months of supervised exercise in warm water was feasible and led to long-term improvements in physical and mental health in patients with fibromyalgia at a similar magnitude to those of shorter therapy programmes.

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Keywords: ANXIETY; DEPRESSION; EXERCISE; FIBROMYALGIA; FITNESS; WATER

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2008

More about this publication?
  • Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine is the international peer-reviewed journal published in English, with at least 10 issues published per year.

    Original articles, reviews, case reports, short communications, special reports and letters to the editor are published, as also are editorials and book reviews. The journal strives to provide its readers with a variety of topics including: functional assessment and intervention studies, clinical studies in various patient groups, methodology in physical and rehabilitation medicine, epidemiological studies on disabling conditions and reports on vocational and sociomedical aspects of rehabilitation.

    The journal is read by a wide group of healthcare professionals including specialists in rehabilitation medicine, neurology, clinical neurophysiology, general medicine, psychologists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and social workers.

    Contributions from all parts of the world and from different professions in rehabilitation are welcome.

    ISI Impact Factor 2009: 1.882.

    Owned by Foundation of Rehabilitation Information.

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