Abstract: Six- and 24-month follow-up of pool exercise therapy and education for patients with fibromyalgia

Scand J Rheumatol 2002;31(5):306-10

Mannerkorpi K, Ahlmen M, Ekdahl C.

Department of Physical Therapy, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Goteborg, Sweden. Kaisa.Mannerkorpi@vgregion.se

OBJECTIVE: To follow patients with fibromyalgia six and 24 months after they finished a six-month treatment programme. The programme comprised pool exercise therapy, adjusted to the patients' limitations, and education based on their health problems.

METHODS: Twenty-six patients were examined six and 24 months after the completion of the treatment programme with the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ), SF-36, the 6-minute walk test, and the Grippit measure. The values obtained at the follow-up examinations were compared with the baseline and post-treatment values.

RESULTS: As compared with baseline, symptom severity (FIQ, SF-36), physical function (FIQ, SF-36, 6-minute walk test) and quality of life (SF-36) still showed improvements six months after the completion of treatment (p <0.05). Pain (FIQ, SF-36), fatigue (FIQ, SF-36), walking ability, and social function (SF-36) still showed improvements 2 years after the completion of the programme as compared with the baseline values (p < 0.05). No significant changes were found for these variables, when the values obtained at the two follow-up examinations were compared with those of the post-treatment examination.

CONCLUSIONS: Improvements in symptom severity, physical function and social function were still found six and 24 months after the completed treatment programme.

PMID: 12455823 [PubMed – in process]

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