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Minerva Medica 2000 November-December;91(11-12):291-8

Copyright © 2000 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: Italian

Assessment of the effectiveness and tolerability of mud-packs therapy with fluorurate radioactivity water on gonarthrosis. A comparative study versus short wave therapy

Fioravanti A., Bisogno S., Nerucci F., Cicero M. R., Locunsolo S., Marcolongo R.


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Background. Spa therapy is frequently used in daily rheumatological practice, but its benefit remains to be evaluated. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the effectiveness and tolerability of mud-packs and mineral baths with fluorurate radioactivity water from the thermal resort of Merano (Bolzano) versus short wave therapy in patients with osteoarthritis of the knees.
Methods. Forty-eight patients were treated for a period of two weeks with mineral water baths and mineral mud-packs and twenty-four patients were treated with short-wave therapy for the same period. Assessment criteria were spontaneous pain ratings on a visual analogue scale (VAS), functional impairment (Lequesne's index), quality of life index (AIMS1), analgesic and/or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs consumption and patient and physician assessment of effectiveness and tolerability of treatments. These criteria were recorded at the beginning and at the end of the treatments and after 3 months. Results. A significant improvement (p<0.0001) in the Lequesne's index, in the VAS and a significant decrease in analgesic consumption was achieved in both groups up to 15 days. The improvement remains to the end of the follow-up period only in the group treated with spa therapy.
Conclusions. This study suggests that spa therapy has a prolonged, beneficial, symptomatic effect in osteoarthritis of the knees.

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