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Posted by on Feb 26, 2019 in Rheumatoid Arthritis | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study investigated if water-based exercise (WBE) improved exercise capacities (ECs) in juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). 

They found that anaerobic exercise capacity (AnEC) was improved in patients with JIA. 

Some background

Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is a condition that affects children under the age of 18. It is caused by inflammation. Symptoms included pain, tiredness, and joint deformities. These symptoms can have a negative impact on exercise capacity (EC). EC is the ability to continue physical work or activity. EC can be divided into two categories. Aerobic EC (AEC) is the ability to do a slow and sustained activity. This includes walking and swimming. Anaerobic EC (AnEC) requires more effort at a faster pace. AnEC activities include lifting weights and climbing stairs. Both AEC and AnEC are reduced in children with JIA. 

Improving EC is important for overall health in JIA. Studies have shown that exercise programs can improve EC. It is not clear what program is most beneficial. Water-based exercise (WBE) is popular in joint conditions like JIA. It is unclear if a WBE can improve EC in patients with JIA.

Methods & findings

This study included 42 patients with JIA. Patients were assigned to one of two groups. One group underwent an 8-week exercise program. This involved doing water-running exercises every weekend. Patients in the second group did not take part in an exercise program (control). All patients maintained their medication during the study. Patients were assessed for EC after 8 weeks.

There was no difference in AEC at the end of the study. AEC was similar in both exercise and control patients. AnEC parameters were improved in patients in the exercise group only. There was no difference in pain levels or range of motion between the groups. 

The bottom line

The authors concluded that AnEC was improved in patients with JOA after a water-based exercise.

The fine print

This was a relatively short study. The benefits of WBE to AEC may require long-term exercise programs. The frequency of exercise in this study may not have been sufficient to improve AEC. 

Published By :

Rheumatology International

Date :

Nov 14, 2018

Original Title :

The effects of 8-week water-running program on exercise capacity in children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis: a controlled trial.

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