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Musculoskeletal disorders are common in the Norwegian population. These disorders are reported as the main contributor to sick leave and work absence.
The Norwegian Rheumatism Association commissioned the Norwegian Knowledge Centre 1) to summarise the effects of hydrotherapy (training in warm water) on sick absence and return-to-work among persons with musculoskeletal disorders, and 2) to provide a list of systematic reviews that summarised the effects of hydrotherapy on pain, function and quality of life.
A systematic review was conducted that included two studies. Both studies investigated the effects of hydrotherapy in combination with another type of training and cognitive behavior therapy or an education program that promoted coping strategies on self-reported sick absence during the last week among women with fibromyalgia.
The two studies showed that:
It is unclear if hydrotherapy in combination with land-based training, cognitive therapy and a patient information leaflet to women with fibromyalgia give less self-reported days off work due to fibromyalgia, compared to patient information leaflet only. The documentation was of very low quality.
None of the included studies evaluated the effects of hydrotherapy among other groups of musculoskeletal disorders than fibromyalgia and chronic widespread pain. We identified 62 systematic reviews that summarised the effects of hydrotherapy on pain, function and quality of life. These systematic reviews are categorised and attached in a list.
Full text available here.
Source: Editors: Myrhaug HT, Strøm V, Hafstad E, Kirkehei I, Reinar LM. Oslo, Norway: Knowledge Centre for the Health Services at The Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH); 2015 May. Report from Norwegian Knowledge Centre for the Health Services (NOKC) No. 11-2015. NIPH Systematic Reviews: Executive Summaries.