Physical activity can help patients with Parkinson’s disease improve their quality of life: Research

Physical activity can improve both the quality of life and the severity of movement-related symptoms in patients with Parkinson’s disease. According to the preliminary Cochrane review of available research, any form of organized exercise is preferable to none. The review looked at 156 randomized controlled trials comparing exercise with no exercise, different types of exercise and no exercise at all. It included 7,939 people from around the world, making it the largest and most comprehensive systematic review of the effect of exercise on patients with Parkinson’s disease.

The Cochrane review, a collaboration of independent, international experts, was led by Dr. Elke Kalbe, Professor of Medical Psychology at the University of Cologne, Germany. It found that physical exercise ranging from dance, water-based exercise, strength and resistance exercises and endurance training to tai chi, yoga and physiotherapy produced mild to large improvements in the severity and quality of movement-related (‘motor’) symptoms. of life. “Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that mostly affects people over 60,” said Professor Kalbe. “Symptoms begin gradually and include movement problems such as tremors, stiffness, slow movement and balance, and lack of coordination. People may also have emotional and mood problems, fatigue, sleep problems, and cognitive difficulties. Parkinson’s disease cannot be cured, but symptoms can be alleviated, and physical therapy or other types of exercise can also help. Until now, it has been unclear whether some types of exercise work better than others. We wanted to find out which exercise works best to improve movement and quality of life.”

The average age of the participants in the studies included in the review was between 60 and 74 years. Most had mild to moderate illness and no significant impairment of their thought processes. The review found that most forms of exercise worked well for participants compared to no physical exercise. The first author of the review, Mr Moritz Ernst, is a member of Cochrane Hematology and deputy head of the Working Group on Evidence-Based Medicine, which is chaired by the co-author of the study, Professor Nicole Skoetz, at the University Hospital of Cologne. He said: “We observed clinically meaningful improvements in the severity of motor symptoms for most types of exercise. These included dance, exercise to improve gait, balance and movement, multi-exercise exercise and mind-body exercise.

“We saw similar benefits in the severity of motor symptoms for water-based exercise, strength and resistance training, and endurance training, but the estimates of improvement were quite imprecise, which means that we are not so sure to say that these improvements are clinically meaningful “For the effects on quality of life, we observed clinically meaningful beneficial effects for water-based exercise and effects likely to be clinically significant for several types of exercise, such as endurance exercise, mind-body exercise, exercise to improve gait, balance and movement, and multi-exercise. Again, these estimates were quite imprecise.”

The confidence in the estimates of effects on symptoms from different forms of exercise varied because some studies were very small and not all provided information on the severity of motor symptoms and quality of life for all participants. However, the authors say their review highlights that most forms of exercise produced meaningful improvements, and they found little evidence of large differences between different exercises. Prof. Kalbe said: “We believe our findings are good news because they indicate that people with Parkinson’s disease can benefit from various structured exercise programs to improve the severity of motor symptoms and quality of life. Our review highlights the importance of physical exercise in general, while the exact type of exercise may be secondary. Therefore, the personal preferences of people with Parkinson’s disease should be taken into account in particular to motivate them to follow an exercise program. Any exercise counts!

“It is important to point out that our conclusions do not rule out that certain motor symptoms may be most effectively treated by programs, such as physical therapy, designed specifically for people with Parkinson’s disease.” Ernst concluded: “Although our results are quite promising for people with Parkinson’s disease, the certainty of the evidence about the effectiveness of different types of exercise and about potential differences between them was usually limited. This was also because most studies had a very small sample size. Although there is already a large amount of research in this area, we would encourage researchers to conduct larger studies with clearly defined samples, as this would help draw conclusions with greater confidence.In addition, it would be admirable to see studies that focus on people with more advanced disease and cognitive impairment, so we could find out if physical exercise could also be beneficial for these people.” (ANI)

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)

Physical activity can help patients with Parkinson’s disease improve their quality of life: Research

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