Exploring the effects of a combined exercise programme on pain and fatigue outcomes in people with systemic sclerosis: Study protocol for a large European multi-centre randomised controlled trial.

MITROPOULOS, Alexandros, BOSTRÖM, Carina, MATTSSON, Malin, KOUIDI, Evangelia, DIMITROULAS, Theodoros, LIEM, Sophie I.E., VLIET VLIELAND, Thoedora P.M., DE VRIES-BOUWSTRA, Jeska K., JACOBSON, Søren, CUOMO, Giovanna, AKIL, Mohammed and KLONIZAKIS, Markos (2022). Exploring the effects of a combined exercise programme on pain and fatigue outcomes in people with systemic sclerosis: Study protocol for a large European multi-centre randomised controlled trial. Trials, 23: 962.

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Official URL: https://trialsjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/1...
Open Access URL: https://trialsjournal.biomedcentral.com/counter/pd... (Published version)
Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-022-06853-1
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    Abstract

    Background Pain, related to Raynaud’s phenomenon or digital ulceration has been identified as very prevalent and debilitating symptoms of systemic sclerosis (SSc), both significantly affecting patients’ quality of life (QoL). Pharmacological therapeutic strategies were found not to be sufficiently effective in the management of SSc-induced pain and fatigue, and evidence for exercise is scarce. As yet, the effects of a long-term, tailored exercise programme on pain and fatigue in patients with SSc have not been explored. In addition to pain and fatigue, this study aims to evaluate the effects of exercise on QoL, physical fitness, functional capacity, and vascular structure in people with SSc (PwSSc). Methods This will be a multicentre (n=6) randomised controlled clinical trial to assess the effect of a previously established, supervised 12-week combined exercise programme on pain and fatigue as compared to no exercise in PwSSc. The study will recruit 180 patients with SSc that will be allocated randomly to two groups. Group A will perform the exercise programme parallel to standard usual care and Group B will receive usual care alone. Patients in the exercise group will undertake two, 45-min sessions each week consisting of 30 min High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) (30s 100% peak power output/30 s passive recovery) on an arm crank ergometer and 15 min of upper body circuit resistance training. Patients will be assessed before as well as at 3- and 6-months following randomisation. Primary outcomes of the study will be pain and fatigue assessed via questionnaires. Secondary outcomes include quality of life, structure of digital microvasculature, body composition, physical fitness, and functional capacity. Discussion Data from this multi-centre research clinical trial will primarily be used to establish the effectiveness of a combined exercise protocol to improve pain and fatigue in SSc. In parallel, this study will be the first to explore the effects of long-term exercise on potential microvascular alterations assessed via NVC. Overall, this study will provide sufficient data to inform current clinical practice guidelines and may lead to an improvement of QoL for patients with SSc.

    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: Will be OA, CC-BY on publication
    Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-022-06853-1
    Depositing User: Justine Gavin
    Date Deposited: 26 Oct 2022 15:12
    Last Modified: 28 Nov 2022 14:36
    URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/30953

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