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Can different degrees of resistance training improve mood states in patients with fibromyalgia? A randomized controlled trial 2022 Vilarino et al

Discussion in ''Conditions related to ME/CFS' news and research' started by Andy, Dec 30, 2022.

  1. Andy

    Andy Committee Member

    Hampshire, UK
    The purpose of this study was to look at the effects of low and high intensity resistance training (RT) on the mood states of fibromyalgia patients (FM).

    A total of 69 women participated in the study, with 31 healthy women serving as control group (HC), and 28 women diagnosed with FM being randomly assigned to one of two RT groups: low intensity or high intensity. Ten women diagnosed with FM formed a group of preferred intensity (PI). FM patients were subjected to 8 weeks of supervised RT with low, high, or PI doses. The exercise protocol was the same for both groups, with large muscle group exercises. Each intervention group performed a specific number of repetitions and rest periods based on the intensity. Training sessions took place twice a week. The HC received no type of intervention. The Brunel mood scale was used to assess mood states.

    When the mood profiles of patients with FM and healthy women were compared, patients with FM showed a worse mood profile. Low and high intensity RT for eight weeks did not improve the mood profile of FM patients. Anger showed a significant difference between LIRT and HIRT groups in the follow-up period (p=0.01); similarly significant differences between HIRT and HC were seen at baseline and at the 4 week evaluation in vigor (p=0.01 and p=0.001) and fatigue (p=0.01 and p=0.03). FM patients have a worse mood profile than healthy women, and eight weeks of low and high intensity RT did not result in significant improvements.

    Open access, https://www.reumatismo.org/index.php/reuma/article/view/1452
    Missense, oldtimer, Sean and 6 others like this.
  2. perchance dreamer

    perchance dreamer Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    My "mood profile" worsens with the endless, largely bogus, studies that imply that fibro is a mental pathology. I was diagnosed 35 years ago, and it's disheartening that so many misconceptions about fibro persist.

    @Andy, I still very much appreciate you posting these articles. I want to know what's going on in research even when it burns my biscuits.
    Missense, oldtimer, Milo and 11 others like this.
  3. rvallee

    rvallee Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    "Improving mood states" is such a generic and pointlessly vague thing. This is not serious and the idea that it's a specific set of movements that should work is ludicrous.

    This whole thing where they pretend that finding the right combination of words and the right combination of movements is looking exactly like magical rituals. Seriously how is this any different? They think there are magical words that should work and ritual movements and affirmations that patients can say and do to ward off illness.

    "Oh no you didn't say the words right and now you raised an army of the dead. It's 'nikto', you illiterate philistine, you can't just harumph your way through the magical word that wards off the army of the dead/illness beliefs/whatever."
    Keela Too, Missense, oldtimer and 5 others like this.
  4. Peter Trewhitt

    Peter Trewhitt Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Well put @rvallee
    oldtimer, Hutan and alktipping like this.
  5. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

    Aotearoa New Zealand
    A Brazilian study.

    It's easy to poke holes in this study. For example, the paper reports:
    "Nobody knew which group the patients belonged to." Really? That must have made it quite difficult for the patients to get to the right training sessions then? Were the people leading the training sessions blindfolded? And how would you analyse the data if nobody knew which groups 'the patients belonged to'? Perhaps the 'nobody knowing' explains why the women with fibromyalgia reported much higher levels of confusion than the healthy controls who got to stay at home (that's a joke).

    The controls did nothing except fill out the mood surveys at baseline and at 4 weeks, so they weren't really controls. They were healthy controls, so not people routinely dealing with pain and fatigue. And there was no group of women with fibromyalgia who didn't do resistance training, so we don't know how much change in mood might happen over time in women with fibromyalgia that isn't possibly related to resistance training.

    Then there's the enormous variability in reported mood states. For example here are the results for anger:
    Screen Shot 2022-12-31 at 1.06.47 pm.png

    Look at the HIRT results for anger over time: 1.4; 3.0; 0.5; and 4.0, with standard deviations often bigger than the reported means. Those figures are all over the place. And check out the baseline anger levels of the Low intensity and High intensity training women - 1.66 and 1.42. Both of those numbers are less than the baseline anger levels of the healthy controls (1.88). (The PI group were from some earlier study.)

    The women with fibromyalgia were, on average, less angry than healthy controls - until they had spent 4 weeks in this study.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 31, 2022
  6. Hutan

    Hutan Moderator Staff Member

    Aotearoa New Zealand
    Here's the BRUMS-32. It doesn't look as though these researchers wanted to know about the mood states of happiness and calmness.

    Screen Shot 2022-12-31 at 3.35.39 pm.png

    It's hardly surprising that someone with a disabling painful disease is going to report to a medical professional asking how they feel that they are worried (about the future, whether they can keep their job, how they will survive if they don't) or unhappy (because they are worried, and in pain).

    Anyway, I guess the researchers should be congratulated on being fairly upfront about the fact that they found that exercise did not change the women's 'mood profile' for the better. This seems like an important finding.

    They still managed to insert a bit of spin there though. See this, for example:
    So, here's those anger results again:

    Yes, the HIRT group's average anger level was lower at 8 weeks and higher at followup. But the LIRT group's average anger levels at 8 weeks was higher than at baseline and it dropped greatly at followup, and their average level of depression dropped after stoping the exercising too. So, should we apply the same logic and say that this result suggests that giving up exercise allows patients with FM to keep anger at bay and makes them happier?

    Here's the full table of results. Note the huge standard deviations in these small samples.
    Screen Shot 2022-12-31 at 3.56.07 pm.png
  7. Milo

    Milo Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    So they assume patients with fibromyalgia are in a bad mood? :arghh:
  8. oldtimer

    oldtimer Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Melbourne Australia
    Here's the link to the Brunel mood test if anyone wants to bother. It's very quick and you can get your score on the spot.

    The advice for fatigue includes splashing your face with water. I've never seen that one written down before.
  9. Sean

    Sean Senior Member (Voting Rights)


    A little sad that honest reporting of results in the abstract is something worth noting, but here we are.
    alktipping, Wonko, shak8 and 5 others like this.
  10. shak8

    shak8 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    These professional, academic true believers (in exercise as a panacea) might have asked as few more FM patients: what happens to you when you try resistance bands or do bicep curls with two pound weights?

    Or even bend to the side. Never fails, no matter how many times I do it, to engender the small spasm later that day or the next couple.

    I have never been able to overcome and diminish the after-effects of "strengthening exercises" to my upper body (especially neck, shoulders, upper arms). Those muscles are too affected, too abnormal all the time to be challenged.

    Carrying a lightweight purse is problematic. A smart phone feels too heavy to carry.

    That said, I can get away with some exercises to major muscles in my legs, usually.

    Also, not having access to the whole article, I don't know what the strengthening exercises were, the type of equipment, if any, used.

    I can assume that if any severely affected FM females did contract major muscles of the upper body, even without weights or bands, they would be pissed off at the exercise research that evening and the next day, and for the rest of the week. Surprised that there wasn't any drop outs.

    Must have recruited very mild patients close to onset of illness (or maybe not they were not actually FM patients, ie not diagnosed properly).

    Why assess mood? Mood is like the weather. And mood is certainly influenced by stuff that happens in life unrelated to the exercise room.

    Is that important to PwFM or is it cultural or personal to the researchers?

    I would think pain level per se is the most salient symptom.

    But most of the researchers are in Brazil and they prize good mood (the most friendly people). I'm reaching here.
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2023

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