One-Year Follow-Up of Spa Treatment in Older Patients with Osteoarthritis: A Prospective, Single Group Study

  • Zwolińska J
  • Weres A
  • Wyszyńska J
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Introduction. Few studies evaluated the effects of spa therapy on pain perception and quality of life in older people with osteoarthritis. Therefore, the aim of the study was to evaluate the short- and long-term effects of spa therapy on quality of life and pain in patients aged 60 years and older with osteoarthritis. Materials and Methods . 70 patients with generalized osteoarthritis were enrolled in the study. Spa treatment lasted 3 weeks (15 days of treatment) and was applied during a session lasting 120 to 150 minutes a day. All the patients benefited from kinesiotherapy, physical agent modalities, massage, peloid therapy, hydrotherapy with mineral waters, and crenotherapy. Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) for pain, the Laitinen scale, and WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire were used to assess the condition of the patients. The examinations were performed three times: at the beginning of the spa treatment, after three months, and one year after the first examinations. Results. Statistically significant improvements were observed in pain (VAS) between consecutive assessments ( p <.001). Laitinen scale also reported beneficial, statistically significant changes in the level of pain ( p <.001). The WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire reported a statistically significant improvement in the domain of social relations in 2-3 and 1-3 periods ( p = .025 and p = .011, resp.). A significant improvement was recorded in the domain of environment between 2-3 and 1-3 periods ( p <.001). Conclusion. Spa treatment reduced the level of pain in majority of the patients in short- and long-term follow-up and contributed to improving the quality of life in the domain of social relations and environment. To confirm the results of this study, there is a need for a randomized controlled trial comparing spa treatment with usual care in the older population with osteoarthritis. Trial Registration Number . This trial was retrospectively registered on 3 January 2018 with NCT03388801 .




Zwolińska, J., Weres, A., & Wyszyńska, J. (2018). One-Year Follow-Up of Spa Treatment in Older Patients with Osteoarthritis: A Prospective, Single Group Study. BioMed Research International, 2018, 1–7.

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