Effects of vibration on disease activity scores in a patient with rheumatoid arthritis: a case study

Raj Kumari, Matthew Wyon, Adam Hawkey, George Metsios

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    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a disabling disease characterised by chronic inflammation. moderate to high intensity exercise is recommended for the management of RA, although this is not always achievable due to pain caused by local inflammation. Identifying the current status of the swollen, tender joints and the patient’s perception of pain can be assessed using the ‘disease activity score’ (DAS28). Recently, vibration training has been shown to improve performance within healthy individuals, but has yet to be used in the treatment of RA. one female patient (age: 43yrs; height: 1.53m; mass: 48kg) with active RA was recruited for the current study. A sit and reach test was performed pre- and post- vibration. the DAS28 was recorded pre-, immediately post-, and 24hrs post- vibration. During vibration exposure, the patient performed three exercises (squat, lunge and calf raise), each for 30s with 60s recovery, at a frequency of 30Hz, and amplitude of 2mm. Results of the DAS28 showed no change in swollen joints 15 minutes post- vibration, but a reduction 24 hours post- vibration. there was no change in the number of tender joints 15 minutes post- training, but an increase 24 hours post- training. there was a 10% increase in the patient’s perception of health 15 minutes posttraining, with no change 24 hours post- training. there was also an increase (0.02m) in sit and reach test scores post- training. the current study suggests that a single bout of vibration training can have positive affects on patients’perceived health, flexibility measures, and potentially
    reduce factors contributing to inflammation. However, the increased joint tenderness postvibration warrants further investigation, in a randomised controlled trial, to verify the effectiveness of vibration on inflammation and joint tenderness.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)30-33
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of Sports Therapy
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2011


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