Researchers at San Diego State University recently announced that a combination of exercise and self-management programs may prove beneficial for the psychological well-being of patients with osteoarthritis. Researchers analyzed 16 studies and found that while exercise generally improved arthritis patients’ physical functioning, educating patients through the implementation of self-management programs tended to improve their psychological state as well. Self-management programs can cover areas such as relaxation, imagery, and diet changes, as well as the proper use of assistive devices. While the improvements were generally modest, the researchers found that the overall evidence suggests that many knee arthritis sufferers need a combination of therapies. The findings were reported in the April 2006 issue of the Journal of Rheumatology.
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