OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of a 6-week exercise and
educational program for patients with fibromyalgia.
Forty-one subjects were randomly assigned to the program or
served as waiting list controls. Program outcome was assessed
with a 6-minute walk test, the Fibromyalgia Impact
Questionnaire, a Self-Efficacy Scale, and a “knowledge”
questionnaire (based on information provided during the
educational sessions). Waiting list control subjects
subsequently completed the program. Program outcome was
reassessed 3 or 6 months post-program.
RESULTS: The program
produced significant improvements in 6-minute walk distance,
well-being, fatigue, self-efficacy (for controlling pain and
other symptoms), and knowledge. At followup, immediate gains
in walk distance, well-being, and self-efficacy were
maintained, but gains in fatigue and knowledge were lost.
CONCLUSION: Short-term exercise and educational programs can
produce immediate and sustained benefits for patients with
fibromyalgia. The benefits of our program may be due to
exercise or education since both interventions were given.
Gowans SE, deHueck A, Voss S, Richardson M