A Comparison of the Effect of Two Types of Whole Body Vibration Platforms on Fibromyalgia. A Randomized Controlled Trial

Author: José Antonio Mingorance1,2, Pedro Montoya1, José García Vivas Miranda3, Inmaculada Riquelme1,2
1 Research Institute of Health Sciences (IUNICS-IdISBa), University of the Balearic Islands, 07122 Palma de Mallorca, Spain.
2 Department of Nursing and Physiotherapy, University of the Balearic Islands, 07122 Palma de Mallorca, Spain.
3 Laboratory of Biosystems, Institute of Physics, Federal University of Bahia, Salvador 40170-115, Brazil.
Conference/Journal: Int J Environ Res Public Health
Date published: 2021 Mar 15
Other: Volume ID: 18 , Issue ID: 6 , Pages: 3007 , Special Notes: doi: 10.3390/ijerph18063007. , Word Count: 279

Whole body vibration has been proven to improve the health status of patients with fibromyalgia, providing an activation of the neuromuscular spindles, which are responsible for muscle contraction. The present study aimed to compare the effectiveness of two types of whole body vibrating platforms (vertical and rotational) during a 12-week training program. Sixty fibromyalgia patients (90% were women) were randomly assigned to one of the following groups: group A (n = 20), who performed the vibration training with a vertical platform; group B (n = 20), who did rotational platform training; or a control group C (n = 20), who did not do any training. Sensitivity measures (pressure pain and vibration thresholds), quality of life (Quality of Life Index), motor function tasks (Berg Scale, six-minute walking test, isometric back muscle strength), and static and dynamic balance (Romberg test and gait analysis) were assessed before, immediately after, and three months after the therapy program. Although both types of vibration appeared to have beneficial effects with respect to the control group, the training was more effective with the rotational than with vertical platform in some parameters, such as vibration thresholds (p < 0.001), motor function tasks (p < 0.001), mediolateral sway (p < 0.001), and gait speed (p < 0.05). Nevertheless, improvements disappeared in the follow-up in both types of vibration. Our study points out greater benefits with the use of rotational rather than vertical whole body vibration. The use of the rotational modality is recommended in the standard therapy program for patients with fibromyalgia. Due to the fact that the positive effects of both types of vibration disappeared during the follow-up, continuous or intermittent use is recommended.

Keywords: chronic pain; postural balance; proprioception; quality of life.

PMID: 33804207 PMCID: PMC8001601 DOI: 10.3390/ijerph18063007