Impaired Postural Control and Balance in Women with Fibromyalgia

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Postural control and balance self efficacy in women with fibromyalgia. Are there differences?

By L. Muto, et al.

Abstract:

BACKGROUND: Fibromyalgia (FM) is a rheumatic disease characterized by chronic widespread pain and symptoms such as fatigue, sleep disturbances, cognitive difficulties, and depression. Postural instability is a debilitating disorder increasingly recognized as part of FM.

OBJECTIVE: To assess and compare postural control and balance selfefficacy in women with and without FM and verify the association of these variables with pain, symptom severity, and strength.

DESIGN: Case-control study SETTING: Physiotherapeutic Clinical Research and Electromyography Laboratory Department of Physical Therapy, Speech Therapy, and Occupational Therapy, School of Medicine, University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil.

POPULATION: Case-control study of 117 women ranging from age 35 to 60 years. Of these, 67 had FM.

METHODS: Posture control was assessed with the modified clinical test of sensory interaction on balance with patients in forceplates, balance self-efficacy with the Activities-specific Balance Confidence scale, pain severity with the visual analog scale, tender point pain threshold with digital algometry, symptom severity with the fibromyalgia impact questionnaire, and lower limb strength with a dynamometer.

RESULTS: Individuals with FM had impaired postural control showing increased speed of oscillation of the center of gravity (p = 0.004) and decreased balance self-efficacy (p < 0.001). They had moderate to excellent correlations of balance self-efficacy with pain (r = 0.7, p < 0.01), muscle strength (r = 0.52, p < 0.01), and symptom severity (r = 0.78, p < 0.10) compared with the control group. Correlation of postural control with the same variables was weak.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients with FM have impaired postural control and low balance self-efficacy that are associated with pain, muscle strength, and symptom severity.

CLINICAL REHABILITATION IMPACT: Postural control and balance self-efficacy needs to be assessed in patients with FM and the treatment goals should be the improvement of postural control and balance self-efficacy.

Source: European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, April 23, 2014. By Muto L, Mango P, Sauer J, Yuan S, Sousa A, and Marques A. Department of Physical Therapy, Speech Therapy and Occupational Therapy, School of Medicine of the University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil.

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One thought on “Impaired Postural Control and Balance in Women with Fibromyalgia”

  1. FLChelle says:

    There wasn’t enough info in this article to help me understand this condition, I would like to find more detailed data on it and if it relates to what happens to me when I sit up in a chair or stand too long. A feeling of overwhelming fatigue comes over me, cognition is dulled, even my hearing … feels like I’m hearing ‘under water’ and depression comes over me. It takes a couple of days for most of these symptoms to dissipate. I’m 74, was diagnosed with FM/CFS at age 50. Have severe insomnia not being helped much with sleep apnea treatment, diagnosed with that a year ago. I had a severe episdoe of this ‘condition’ last time in my dr’s office, very long wait time for my appt, sittin up straight in uncomfortable chairs from room to room until dr entered last room. Didn’t even realize I was in that condition until I left, could barely ask dr questions or participate in my appt time. Had driven a half hour to get there, so additional time sitting up straight. Hope to find more info on this topic. Thank you for this article, not sure it actually applies to my situation.

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