P.d’Abano Scientific Research Center, L.go Marconi 8, Abano T. (PD), Italy
BACKGROUND: The connection between osteoarthritis (OA) and osteoporosis (OP) has attracted considerable attention but reports about bone mass density (BMD) in OA are often contradictory. Some data indicate that BMD is higher in OA patients than in healthy subjects, whereas other studies showed no differences. It has been observed that mud pack treatment (MPT) induces a decrease in cytokines with bone-resorbing effects. The aim of this study is to evaluate the response of bone and connective tissue to physical exercise and thermal treatment.
METHODS: Forty osteoarthrosic patients were divided in group A (physical exercise and MPT), and group B (physical exercise alone). Blood and urine samples were collected before and after the treatments to assay blood metabolic markers and urinary hydroxyproline.
RESULTS: In group A, some parameters show statistically significant differences before and after mud pack treatment (MPT). In group B, all parameters present no statistical significant changes before and after the physical exercise program.
CONCLUSIONS: Few studies established the importance of exercise to maintain normal cartilage and bone metabolism. In group A of the present study, an influence on all the parameters of bone metabolism is evident. It is possible that physical exercise only if combined with MPT stimulates physiologic bone metabolism and favors skeletal health.