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2012 Annual Conference

October 25–28, 2012

Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio, TX

2012 TPTA Poster Abstracts


Saturday, October 27, 2012 at 1:00 PM–2:00 PM CDT
Bulletin Board 15B
Presenter's Name - Last Name First

Dr Samantha Richter & Ashley Trotter.

Presenter's Affiliation, City, State

Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas. Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.


OBJECTIVE:  To determine the efficacy of manual therapy (MT) compared to a non intervention group (CG) in the treatment of fibromyalgia (FM), regarding quality of life, level of disability, level of anxiety and depression and sleep these were assessed using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire, SF-36v2, and Hospital Anxiety & Depression Scale (HADS), Pittsburg Sleep Qualitative Index (PSQI).


Twenty three, age 48.48±14.68, 3/20 (M/F) outpatients.


METHODS:  Twenty three, age 48.48±14.68, 3/20 (M/F) outpatients, 18-80 years old, diagnosed with FM, were randomly assigned to two groups to carry out 9 weekly treatments with MT or within a non intervention control group (CG). The outcome measures and demographics questionnaire were taken at Week 0 and then again at Week 9 for all participants. Blinded data analyses was performed using SPSS for complete data sets (n=16).

Data Analysis

Blinded data analyses was performed using SPSS for complete data sets (n=16).


RESULTS:  There was a statistically significant change between groups for social functioning (p = 0.001), bodily pain (p=0.013) and general health (p=0.009) components of the SF-36v2. The analysis of the FIQ total score indicates a 14% change in the intervention group which is clinically relevant. There were no clinically significant differences observed between the manual therapy group and non intervention groups in anxiety and depression levels or levels of sleep.


CONCLUSION: Manual therapy was found to decrease FM symptoms over a nine week treatment period, with significant improvements in bodily pain, social functioning and general health. However, other behaviors such as sleep, anxiety and depression continue with a limited response. This study suggests that manual therapy may be beneficial within a multidisciplinary approach for FM symptoms patients especially for initial treatment of patients.

Clinical Relevance

BACKGROUND:  Fibromyalgia (FM) is a chronic musculoskeletal disorder requiring a variety of physical and pharmacological inventions. FM is characterized by a history of widespread pain of at least 3 months on both the left and right sides of the body, above and below the waist and the axis (Wolfe et al., 1990).  Chronic pain is a major symptom of FM, however, others include: fatigue, sleep disorders, morning stiffness, cognitive difficulties, paraesthesia and swelling of a non-inflammatory origin (Gur et al., 2006; Guymer & Littlejohn, 2002a).  Flare-ups of FM are commonly associated with emotional stress, physical exertion, poor sleep, concurrent illness or seasonal change (Gur et al., 2006) (Guymer & Littlejohn, 2002b). Manual physical therapy techniques are frequently utilized to promote symptomatic relief and improve physical biomechanics; however the effectiveness of these techniques with patients with FM is unclear. These may comprise of a single or combination of techniques including soft tissue incorporating unwinding, inhibition, stretching; articulation and joint mobilization; Functional; Myofascial Trigger Point release; Muscle Energy Techniques (MET); Strain/Counterstrain; Balanced Ligamentous Tension and Craniosacral Rhythm.


Dr Samantha Richter, Texas State University. Victoria University.
Ashley Trotter, Texas State University