Arthritis Rheum, 200103; 44(3):515-22 HAOKKINEN A , et al.
A randomized two-year study of the effects of dynamic strength training on muscle strength, disease activity, functional capacity, and bone mineral density in early rheumatoid arthritis.
Haokkinen A, Sokka T, Kotaniemi A, Hannonen P Central Finland Health Care District, Jyvaoskylao, Finland.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the impact of a 2-year program of strength training on
muscle strength, bone mineral density (BMD), physical function, joint damage,
and disease activity in patients with recent-onset (<2 years) rheumatoid
arthritis (RA). METHODS: In this prospective trial, 70 RA patients were randomly
assigned to perform either strength training (all major muscle groups of the
lower and upper extremities and trunk, with loads of 50-70% of repetition
maximum) or range of motion exercises (without resistance) twice a week; all
were encouraged to engage in recreational activities 2-3 times a week. All
patients completed training diaries (evaluated bi-monthly) and were examined at
6-month intervals. All were treated with medications to achieve disease
remission. Maximum strength of the knee extensors, trunk flexors and extensors,
and grip strength was measured with dynamometers. BMD was measured at the
femoral neck and lumbar spine by dual x-ray densitometry. Disease activity was
determined by the Disease Activity Score, the extent of joint damage by the
Larsen score, and functional capacity by the Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ);
walking speed was also measured.