A comparative evaluation of a fibromyalgia rehabilitation program
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OBJECTIVE: To compare an evidence-based clinical fibromyalgia program, referred to as Fibro-Fit, with results of controlled clinical trials. METHODS: An interdisciplinary group education and exercise program with 36 sessions over 12 weeks was used. Demographic, clinical, and outcome variables were collected on 149 participants, of whom 71% completed the program. Outcomes included measures of self-efficacy, pain, physical fitness, function, and coping skills. RESULTS: Results of the prospective before-after evaluation showed statistically significant (P < 0.005) improvements in all outcomes except for grip strength. These results were comparable with controlled clinical trials found in the literature. Data suggest that smoking, fibromyalgia support groups, and medications may be important modifiable factors. CONCLUSIONS: Results suggest that Fibro-Fit was effective in improving physical impairments and function. Further investigation is required to refine the effective components of these programs and determine how modifiable factors can be used to improve outcomes.
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