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Thalassotherapy for fibromyalgia: a randomized controlled trial comparing aquatic exercises in sea water and water pool


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of aerobic exercise in water pool compared with aerobic exercise performed in sea by women with fibromyalgia (FM). A total of 46 patients were randomly allocated into two groups: pool group (23 patients) and sea group (23 patients) that performed the same aerobic exercise program. Patients were evaluated baseline and after 12 weeks using: VAS, number of tender points, FIQ, SF-36, PSQI, and BDI. Both groups improved significantly in post-treatment for all the evaluated variables. There were no significant differences between two groups, except for BDI (F = 2.418, < 0.0001). Aerobic exercise program performed in water (pool or sea) was effective for patients with FM. However, sea water exercises have been shown to bring more advantages related to emotional aspects. Then, exercise performed sea water (thalassotherapy) is an option for effective treatment with low cost for patients with FM.

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Correspondence to Sandra Cristina de Andrade.

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de Andrade, S.C., de Carvalho, R.F.P.P., Soares, A.S. et al. Thalassotherapy for fibromyalgia: a randomized controlled trial comparing aquatic exercises in sea water and water pool. Rheumatol Int 29, 147–152 (2008).

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  • Fibromyalgia
  • Aerobic exercise
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Thalassotherapy