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The Effects of 12 Weeks of Resistance Exercise Training on Disease Severity and Autonomic Modulation at Rest and After Acute Leg Resistance Exercise in Women with Fibromyalgia

      Abstract

      Kingsley JD, McMillan V, Figueroa A. The effects of 12 weeks of resistance exercise training on disease severity and autonomic modulation at rest and after acute leg resistance exercise in women with fibromyalgia.

      Objective

      To determine the effects of 12 weeks of resistance exercise training (RET) on disease severity and autonomic modulation at rest and after acute leg resistance exercise in women with fibromyalgia (FM) and healthy controls (HCs).

      Design

      Before-after trial.

      Setting

      Testing and training occurred in a university setting.

      Participants

      Women with FM (n=9; mean age ± SD, 42±5y) and HCs (n=15; mean age, 45±5y).

      Intervention

      Both groups underwent testing before and after 12 weeks of whole-body RET consisting of 3 sets of 8 to 12 repetitions on 5 different exercises.

      Main Outcome Measures

      Disease severity was assessed using the number of active tender points, myalgic score, and the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ). Heart rate and autonomic modulation using power spectral analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) were measured at rest and 20 minutes after 5 sets of leg-press exercise.

      Results

      There was no group-by-time interaction for any variable. Women with FM and HCs had similar increases in maximal strength (P<.05) after RET. Number of active tender points, myalgic score, and FIQ score were decreased (P<.05) after RET in women with FM. Heart rate and natural log (Ln) high frequency (LnHF) were recovered, whereas Ln low frequency (LnLF) and LnLF/LnHF ratio were increased (P<.05) 20 minutes after acute leg resistance exercise. There were no significant effects of RET on HRV at rest or postexercise.

      Conclusions

      These findings indicate that cardiovagal modulation of heart rate recovers early after leg resistance exercise in women with FM and HCs. It is concluded that RET reduces the severity of FM, but it has no impact on autonomic modulation of heart rate.

      Key Words

      List of Abbreviations:

      1RM (1-repetition maximum), 10-RM (10-repetition maximum), ANOVA (analysis of variance), BMI (body mass ind), CI (confidence interval), ECG (electrocardiogram), FIQ (Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire), FM (fibromyalgia), HCs (healthy controls), HF (high frequency), HRV (heart rate variability), Ln (natural log), LF (low frequency), RET (resistance exercise training)
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