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Arthritis

  1. Tai Chi, Imagery and Water Aerobics - a Winning Combo for Arthritis

    A water aerobics instructor reports that guided imagery with a distinctly Christian flavor is a helpful element in the cool-down phase of her water aerobics and with water tai chi classes, designed for people suffering from arthritis.  Here are her own words:

    Dear Health Journeys,

    I am a water aerobics instructor, who also teaches tai chi in the water to people suffering from arthritis.  I discovered imagery in the library on the internet.  Now that we have a nice, new, warm, 30-person, hydrotherapy pool, I now use my own guided imagery for the cool-down part of my classes.

    I use sayings and visualizations that I have written and say quietly to my classes, as they move their arms and legs slowly to keep warm during this time.  I encourage them to close their eyes and imagine.
       
    Because this is a Bible-based faith community, I use images of Jesus, and I close with prayer.  This seems to be a very effective, soothing and a much-appreciated way to conclude my classes.
     
    Blessings to all of you,

    Vicky B.

    [Ed. Note: For excellent, Bible-based guided imagery, the Rev. Donna Shenk and Dr. Robert Miller have created the Tranquilities Series, which can be found here.]

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  2. Guided Imagery from Kaiser Permanente Reduces Rheumatoid Arthritis Pain

    We just found this recent posting under a Hot Research study on imagery and pain. It’s about how guided imagery helped someone with a lot of pain. We thought it was worth a second posting.  Here goes:

    Well, I don't know how it works but it has for me.  I have Chronic JRA (juvenile rheumatoid arthritis) since age 5, in several large joints on the right side, and have only used stretching exercise and walking, as my father had done every morning for years.

    I also used injections in my teens, a hot H20 bottle, and Ace bandages on my hand and knees, and once had the Emergency Room orthopedic doctor put a cast on my right hand (it worked, so far as the awful pain).

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  3. Study Shows Yoga & Meditation Reduce Fibromyalgia Symptoms

    Researchers from Bright Path Yoga in Plano, Texas looked at the efficacy of an 8-week strategy of using yoga and meditation to help manage fibromyalgia symptoms, which typically consist of widespread pain, sleep disturbance, stiffness, fatigue, headache, and mood disorders.

    The small pilot study looked at the impact of this program on 11 participants.
     
    Results revealed significant improvement in the overall health status of the participants and in symptoms of stiffness, anxiety, and depression. Significant improvements were also seen in the reported number of days "felt good" and number of days "missed work" because of fibromyalgia.

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  4. UK Review: Guided Imagery Shows Promise for Musculoskeletal Pain

    Researchers at the Peninsula Medical School in Exeter, Devon, UK, performed a systematic review of the literature to determine the efficacy of guided imagery as a treatment for musculoskeletal pain (MSP).

    Six databases were searched from inception up through May 2010. All controlled clinical trials were considered, if they investigated GI in patients with any MSP in any anatomic location, and if they assessed pain as an outcome measure. Trials of motor imagery were excluded. The selection of studies, data extraction, and validation were performed independently by 2 reviewers.

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  5. Tai Chi + Imagery in the Pool = Help with Arthritis

    Dear Health Journeys,

    I am a water aerobics instructor, who also teaches tai chi in the water to people suffering from arthritis. I discovered imagery in the library on the internet. Now that we have a nice, new, warm, 30-person, hydrotherapy pool, I now use my own guided imagery for the cool-down part of my classes.

    I use sayings and visualizations that I have written and say quietly to my classes, as they move their arms and legs slowly to keep warm during this time. I encourage them to close their eyes and imagine. Because this is a Bible-based faith community, I use images of Jesus, and I close with prayer. This seems to be a very effective, soothing and a much-appreciated way to conclude my classes.

    Blessings to all of you,

    Vicky B.

    Read more »
  6. Guided Imagery: A Winning Strategy for Osteoarthritis

    Researchers from Indiana University School of Nursing in Indianapolis looked at whether guided imagery and relaxation was a useful self-management strategy for osteoarthritis, and whether it could help control symptoms and decrease the use of medication. Specifically, they tested whether it could reduce pain, improve mobility and reduce medication use.
     
    Thirty older adults were randomly assigned to participate in the 4-month trial by using either GIR or a sham intervention, planned relaxation.

    Repeated-measures analysis of variance revealed that, compared with those who used the sham intervention, participants who used GIR had a significant reduction in pain from baseline to month 4 and significant improvement in mobility from baseline to month 2. 

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  7. Amazing Sombra Goop Saves Yet Another Set of Achey Joints!

    We got a big kick out of this posting, which, as luck would have it, is from the one and only M.A. Bjarkman, one of the founding goddesses and leading lights of The ConferenceWorks!, the generous hosts of so many of my weekend trainings.  (They’re currently featuring the awesome likes of Greg Braden, Donna Eden and David Feinstein, Joseph Chilton Pearce and Geneen Roth.) 

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  8. Electrical Acupuncture Stimulators & Relaxation Help With Rheumatoid Arthritis

    Researchers from the Department of Anesthesiology of the Pain Clinic, in Hannover, Germany, compared the efficacy of auricular electrio-acupuncture (EA) to autogenic training (AT) for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Forty-four patients with RA were randomized to either EA or AT groups which met once a week for 6 weeks. 

    Primary outcome measures were the mean weekly pain intensity and the disease activity score (DAS 28). Secondary outcome measures were the use of pain medication, the pain disability index (PDI), the clinical global impression (CGI) and pro-inflammatory cytokine levels, which were assessed during the study period and 3 months after the end of treatment.

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  9. The effectiveness of therapeutic touch for decreasing pain in elders with degenerative arthritis.

    Therapeutic Touch is found to decrease pain in elders with degenerative arthritis, compared with progressive muscle relaxation or routine treatment

    Researchers from the University of Wisconsin School of Nursing in Eau Claire investigated whether Therapeutic Touch (TT) decreased pain in elders with degenerative arthritis, as compared with routine treatment and progressive muscle relaxation (PMR).

    Eighty-two noninstitutionalized subjects, age 55 or older, were randomly assigned to TT or PMR treatments. Subjects served as their own controls for 4 weeks and then received six treatments at 1-week intervals. Visual analogue scales (VAS) for pain intensity and distress were used.

    Significant differences from baseline to post-sixth treatment were found within groups. TT decreased pain (t(46) = 7.60, p = < .001) and distress (t(44) = 7.08, p = < .001). PMR decreased pain (t(36) = 6.58, p = .005) and distress (t(36) = 6.90, p = < .001). Scores were lower for PMR, showing that pain and distress were more improved by Therapeutic Touch.

    Citation: Eckes Peck SD. The effectiveness of therapeutic touch for decreasing pain in elders with degenerative arthritis. Journal of Holistic Nursing. 1997 Jun;15 (2): pages 176-98.

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  10. Differential effectiveness of psychological interventions for reducing osteoarthritis pain.

    Differential effectiveness of psychological interventions for reducing osteoarthritis pain: a comparison of Erikson hypnosis and Jacobson relaxation.

    A new randomized, controlled clinical trial from France investigated the effectiveness of 8-session Eriksonian hypnosis and 8-session Jacobsonian progressive relaxation for the reduction of osteoarthritis pain, using subjects with knee or hip pain. Patients were randomly assigned to one of the intervention groups or a control group. Overall, results demonstrated that the two experimental groups had a lower level of subjective pain than the control group, and that the level of subjective pain decreased with time. In addition, pain reduction occurred more rapidly for the hypnosis group. Results also showed that both hypnosis and relaxation are effective in reducing the amount of analgesic medication taken by participants.

    Citation: Gay MC, Philippot P, Luminet O. Differential effectiveness of psychological interventions for reducing osteoarthritis pain: a comparison of Erikson hypnosis and Jacobson relaxation. European Journal of Pain 2002;6(1):1-16.

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