To determine and compare short- and long-term effects of aerobic
exercise (AE), stress management treatment (SMT), and
treatment-as-usual (TAU) in fibromyalgia, 60 patients were
randomized to 14 weeks of treatment by either AE, SMT or TAU.
Outcome measures at baseline, midway through treatment, at
treatment completion, and at 4 year follow up included a
patient made drawing of pain distribution, dolorimetry of
tender points, ergometer cycle test, global subjective
improvement, and VAS registrations of: pain, disturbed sleep,
lack of energy, and depression. Both AE and SMT showed
positive short-term effects. AE was the overall most effective
treatment, despite being subject to the most sceptical patient
attitude prior to the study. At follow up, there were no
obvious group differences in symptom severity, which for AE
seemed to be due to a considerable compliance problem.
Wigers SH, Stiles TC, Vogel PA