n South African Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology - Impact of home-based exercise on quality of life of women with primary dysmenorrhoea : original article




Primary dysmenorrhoea is chronic cyclical pelvic pain associated with menstruation in the absence of an identifiable pathological condition. While medical treatments are available for primary dysmenorrhoea, exercise is accepted as an effective intervention. This study aimed to investigate the impact of home-based exercise on pain intensity and quality of life in women with primary dysmenorrhoea. Of 45 women with primary dysmenorrhoea included in the study, 40 completed it. At the beginning of the study baseline physical activity was determined using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ). Pain intensity was measured on the visual analogue scale (VAS), and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) was assessed with the SF-36 health survey. A standard home-based exercise intervention was recommended for all the patients, and the outcome measures were re-assessed at the first, second and third menstrual cycles. At each menstrual cycle VAS showed a significant decrease (<0.001). When the eight domains of the SF-36 health survey and the physical and mental component summary scores were compared between the first and fourth visits, all domains showed significant improvement (<0.012). In our study, home-based exercise intervention seemed to provide a significant improvement in HRQoL and pain in patients with primary dysmenorrhoea.


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