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Regular Physical Activity Alleviates Arthritis Symptoms

Posted Sep 05 2011 10:17pm
Posted on 2011-09-05 06:00:00 in Arthritis | Exercise | Lifestyle |
Regular Physical Activity Alleviates Arthritis Symptoms

While a number of studies suggest a substantial therapeutic role for physical activity in alleviating the symptoms of osteoarthritis, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine (Illinois, USA) researchers warn that more than half of women and 40% of men with arthritis are virtually couch potatoes. Postulating that physical activity can help people with arthritis better control and lower pain and improve general function; and that some studies indicate exercise may delay or even prevent disability in people with arthritis, Dorothy Dunlop and colleagues asked 1,111 adults with knee osteoarthritis, ages 49 to 84 years, to wear an accelerometer---a small, sophisticated device that looks like a pedometer---to measure their physical activity for one week during waking hours. The team found that only 40.1% of men and 56.5% of women met the federal guidelines recommending that adults with arthritis participate in 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity, low-impact activity.  Writing that: “Despite substantial health benefits from physical activity, adults with knee [osteoarthritis] were particularly inactive” with “the percentages of men and women who met public health physical activity guidelines were substantially less than previous reports based on self-reported activity in arthritis populations,” the team urges that: “These findings support intensified public health efforts to increase physical activity levels among persons with knee [osteoarthritis].”

Dorothy D. Dunlop, Jing Song, Pamela A. Semanik, Rowland W. Chang, Leena Sharma, Joan M. Bathon, et al. “Objective physical activity measurement in the osteoarthritis initiative: Are guidelines being met?”  Arthritis & Rheumatism, 26 July 201

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