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Physical activity: therapeutic role in schizophrenia?

Physical activity: therapeutic role in schizophrenia?

 

A meta-analysis indicates benefits on mental health and well-being practiced regularly in people with schizophrenia physical activity.

A meta-analysis of Gorczynski and Faulkner published in the journal Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010 shows psychological benefits of regular physical activity in people with schizophrenia from three randomized controlled trials. The authors encourage research on biological and functional indicators.


The Study Rationale

Improve the quality of life of people with schizophrenia is clearly a way to help them better cope with the disease. These people have more frequently than the general population overweight or obese. Psychologically, their autonomy is limited by associated disorders such as depression, low self-esteem and social withdrawal. Propose a tailored fitness program supposed to have health benefits and quality of life for people with schizophrenia could limit these various disorders causing disabling situations in everyday life.

An exercise program tailored could prevent problems associated with schizophrenia.

The Question

What are the benefits of physical activity on the quality of life of people with schizophrenia?

The Protocol

The meta-analysis type Cochrane Systematic Reviews 3 randomized controlled trials retained the 442 electronic documents listed in all major search engines and medical scientists. Interventions included mainly endurance activities (including a warm-up time and cool-down with stretching and relaxation) over a period of 3 to 4 months in a specialized center.

Main Results

The results of this meta-analysis show a profit programs primarily at mental health and well being. Profits physically are not significant (e.g., body mass index, resting heart rate, waist circumference). No adverse side effects have been observed by the three randomized controlled trials.

The benefits on mental health and well-being of adapted physical activities for people with schizophrenia are shown. No adverse side effects were observed.


What it means for Patients

Regular physical activity is beneficial to the mental health of people with schizophrenia today without evidence of dose or optimal content can be delivered. The authors encourage patients to be more physically active, with a view to follow standard recommendations, 30 minutes of physical activity per day.

What it means for Healthcare Professionals

The authors invite clinicians to pay more attention to physical activity in people with schizophrenia and trying to overcome all the brakes (eg, risks related to medication, transportation, cost, stigma). This practice is not deleterious to the mental or physical health. It has modest but real benefits on mental health in 3-4 months. Studies should be conducted to better identify the benefits of physical fitness. The authors encourage patients to be more physically active, with a view to follow standard recommendations, 30 minutes a day.

What it means for Researchers

This meta-analysis includes only three randomized controlled trials. The concluding scope is limited especially as the three studies were not done double-blind. This methodological limitation may tend to overestimate the benefits of the tested interventions. Still, this publication shows that randomized controlled trials are feasible with people with schizophrenia. Knowing that 3 studies included are recent (2005, 2007 and 2008), it is the sign of an outbreak that will intensify in the coming years.

The message for Policymakers

Encourage the practice of physical activity in people with schizophrenia becomes important. This publication gives weight and arguments to convince families, multidisciplinary teams, administrators to overcome their fears and constraints of any kind to the practice of physical activity for these groups.


The reference

Gorczynski P, Faulkner G (2010). Exercise therapy for schizophreniaCochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 5, CD004412.


To reference this Blog en Sante © article.

Ninot G (2014). L’activité physique: rôle thérapeutique dans la schizophrénie? Blog en Sante, A10.

© Copyright 2014 Grégory Ninot. All rights reserved.

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