Fibromyalgia Patients Get Relief from Aquatic Exercise
Posted Jan 17 2011 5:46pm
Researchers from Spain and Portugal have found that patients experience significant pain relief when they get regular exercise in a heated pool. Current treatments include pain relief medications, exercise, relaxation therapy and low-dose antidepressants.
The study participants included 33 women with fibromyalgia. 17 of them had supervised 1-hour exercise sessions 3 times a week in a heated pool for 8 months, 16 did no aquatic exercise.
The researchers found that the fibromyalgia symptoms were reduced and the women’s health-related quality of life was improved by long-term aquatic exercise. The researchers said: “The addition of an aquatic exercise program to the usual care for in women is cost-effective in terms of both health care costs and societal costs.”
In an earlier study, the same researchers found that a short-term exercise program helped ease symptoms, but pain returned when patients completed the exercise regimen.
The researchers also noted that starting an aquatic exercise program may be difficult as a result of the distance from the patient’s home to a suitable pool and limits on the number of patients that can participate in a session.
The report also states that further research needs to be conducted in order to compare the benefits of aquatic exercise with low-impact aerobics, walking and tai-chi.
Narcis Gusi, of the University of Extremadura in Caceres, Spain and Pablo Tomas-Carus of the University of Evora, Portugal, were the studies co-leads. It was published in the February 21st issue of Arthritis Research and Therapy.