The effect of combined therapy (spa and physical therapy) on pain in various chronic diseases

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Objective: Spa therapy is commonly used in the treatment of daily chronic diseases practice, but its benefits are still the subjects of discussion. This study investigates possible effects of a combined spa and physical therapy program on pain and hemodynamic responses in various chronic diseases. Methods: The pain intensity and hemodynamic responses of 472 patients involved in a spa and physical therapy program were studied retrospectively. Assessment criteria were pain [Visual Analog Scale (VAS)] and hemodynamic responses (heart rate, blood pressure, respiratory rate). Assessments took place before, immediately after treatment, and after completion of the spa program (before discharge). Results: The patients with ankle arthrosis, fibromyalgia and cervical disc herniation reported the highest VAS score before treatment program (P < 0.05). After the therapy program, VAS scores were seen to decrease compared to before treatment (P < 0.05). The patients with osteoarthritis of the hip (1.3 ± 1.2) and soft tissue rheumatism (1.3 ± 1.2) had the lowest VAS score before discharge compared to patients with other pathologies (P < 0.05). No statistically significant differences were detected between both sexes in terms of pain improvement (P > 0.05). On discharge, all hemodynamic responses decreased significantly compared to before and immediately after initiation of the therapy program (P < 0.01). Conclusion: To decrease pain and high blood pressure without hemodynamic risk, a combined of spa and physical therapy program may help to decrease pain and improve hemodynamic response in patients with irreversible pathologies. © 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.




Cimbiz, A., Bayazit, V., Hallaceli, H., & Cavlak, U. (2005). The effect of combined therapy (spa and physical therapy) on pain in various chronic diseases. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 13(4), 244–250.

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