Study: Does exercise have an effect on pain catastrophizing? The aim of this study was to consider the effect of exercise on pain catastrophizing. We asked you to complete questionnaires detailing the amount of exercise you do per week
Study: Does exercise have an effect on pain catastrophizing?
The aim of this study was to consider the effect of exercise on pain catastrophizing. We asked you to complete questionnaires detailing the amount of exercise you do per week, as well as a pain catastrophizing scale and a demographic and pain survey in order to measure your pain experience and your psychological response to pain.
If you feel uncomfortable, unhappy or at risk after taking part in this research, we suggest you can contact the University of Liverpool Counselling Services who can support you through any concerns you may have:
If you are not a student at the University of Liverpool, we encourage you to contact your GP or Samaritans who can support you and offer advice. Information from the following resources may also be helpful:
If you have any concerns regarding your exercise levels, we encourage you to look over the sources listed below:
Change 4 life Home | Change4Life (www.nhs.uk)
NHS Benefits of exercise – NHS (www.nhs.uk)
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Fibromyalgia (FM) is a chronic syndrome characterized by widespread pain and other physical and psychological features. In this study, we aimed to analyze the effect of a low-intensity physical exercise (PE) program, combining endurance training and coordination, on psychological aspects (i.e., pain catastrophizing, anxiety, depression, stress), pain perception (i.e., pain acceptance, pressure pain threshold (PPT), and quality of life and physical conditioning (i.e., self-perceived functional capacity, endurance and functional capacity, power and velocity) in women with FM. For this purpose, a randomized controlled trial was carried out.
Thirty-two women with FM were randomly allocated to a PE group (PEG, n = 16), performing an eight-week low-intensity PE program and a control group (CG, n = 16). Pain catastrophizing, anxiety, depression, stress, pain acceptance, PPT, quality of life, self-perceived functional capacity, endurance and functional capacity, power, and velocity were assessed before and after the intervention
We observed a significant improvement in all studied variables in the PEG after the intervention (p < 0.05). In contrast, the CG showed no improvements in any variable, which further displayed poorer values for PPT (p < 0.05).
In conclusion, a low-intensity combined PE program, including endurance training and coordination, improves psychological variables, pain perception, quality of life, and physical conditioning in women with FM.
Fibromyalgia (FM) is a chronic condition characterized by widespread pain associated with other physical symptoms, such as fatigue or decreased physical capacity, and psychological alterations .
One of the psychological alterations that has been associated with FM is pain catastrophizing, a specific psychosocial construct of pain, which includes cognitive and emotional processing, sense of helplessness, pessimism, and rumination about pain-related symptoms .
Pain catastrophizing has been associated with pain severity and disability , which is being considered a risk factor for pain chronification . Furthermore, this construct of pain has been shown to decrease pain acceptance, which, in turn, may aggravate the symptomatology of FM .
In addition to pain catastrophizing, other psychological alterations that can aggravate the symptomatology of FM are anxiety and depression. These alterations, together with high levels of stress, have been proposed as precipitating and/or perpetuating factors of this condition  and are inversely related to quality of life among FM patients .
In this regard, it has been suggested that the higher the level of pain catastrophizing, anxiety, and depression in FM individuals, the greater their sensitivity to non-painful stimuli and difficulty in coping with the painful process .
Interestingly, pain catastrophizing, has also been inversely related to muscular endurance . This tendency has proven to have a negative impact on neuromuscular, cardiovascular, immune, and neuroendocrine systems .
In turn, such an impact causes an alteration of functional capacity , which can be assessed both objectively and subjectively. An objective decline in physical conditioning has a detrimental effect on the ability to perform activities of daily life, but also the subjectively altered perception of functional capacity can lead to actual physical inactivity and a progressive deconditioning .