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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017, Article ID 2356346, 14 pages
Review Article

Effectiveness of Therapeutic Exercise in Fibromyalgia Syndrome: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials

1Department of Medicine and Medical Specialty, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Alcalá, Alcalá de Henares, Spain
2Immune System Diseases-Rheumatology and Oncology Service, University Hospital “Príncipe de Asturias”, Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, Spain
3Department of Nursing and Physiotherapy, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Alcalá, Alcalá de Henares, Spain

Correspondence should be addressed to M. Dolores Sosa-Reina; se.hau.ude@asos.serolod

Received 24 May 2017; Accepted 13 August 2017; Published 20 September 2017

Academic Editor: Emmanuel G. Ciolac

Copyright © 2017 M. Dolores Sosa-Reina et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. The aim of this study was to summarize evidence on the effectiveness of therapeutic exercise in Fibromyalgia Syndrome. Design. Studies retrieved from the Cochrane Plus, PEDro, and Pubmed databases were systematically reviewed. Randomized controlled trials and meta-analyses involving adults with fibromyalgia were included. The primary outcomes considered in this systematic review were pain, global well-being, symptoms of depression, and health-related quality of life. Results. Effects were summarized using standardized mean differences with 95% confidence intervals using a random effects model. This study provides strong evidence that physical exercise reduces pain (−1.11 [95% CI] −1.52; −0.71; overall effect ), global well-being (−0.67 [95% CI] −0.89, −0.45; ), and symptoms of depression (−0.40 [95% CI] −0.55, −0.24; ) and that it improves both components of health-related quality of life (physical: 0.77 [95% CI] 0.47; 1.08; ; mental: 0.49 [95% CI] 0.27; 0.71; ). Conclusions. This study concludes that aerobic and muscle strengthening exercises are the most effective way of reducing pain and improving global well-being in people with fibromyalgia and that stretching and aerobic exercises increase health-related quality of life. In addition, combined exercise produces the biggest beneficial effect on symptoms of depression.