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Exercise Improves Quality of Life for People with Rheumatoid Arthritis

Physical activity has been shown to help reduce symptoms of inflammatory types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and spondyloarthritis (SpA). A new study analyzed whether physical activity also affects function and quality of life. Researchers, who reported their findings in Arthritis Care & Research (January 2022), conducted a review of 55 studies. Participants were adults ages 36 to 73 with RA, PsA or SpA. The studies compared inactive people with those who engaged in aerobic exercise, aerobic exercise plus strength training or strength training alone. In people with RA, all forms of physical activity had a significant positive effect on quality of life, and it was associated with improvements in function, pain, fatigue and other symptoms. Similar effects were seen with PsA and SpA, although there were fewer studies.

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