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A two-year randomized controlled trial of progressive resistance exercise for Parkinson's disease

Authors

  • Daniel M. Corcos PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Departments of Bioengineering and Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
    2. Department of Neurological Sciences, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
    • Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Julie A. Robichaud PT, PhD,

    1. Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Fabian J. David PhD,

    1. Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Sue E. Leurgans PhD,

    1. Department of Neurological Sciences, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
    2. Department of Preventive Medicine, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • David E. Vaillancourt PhD,

    1. Departments of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology, Biomedical Engineering, and Neurology, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA
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  • Cynthia Poon PhD,

    1. Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Miriam R. Rafferty DPT,

    1. Graduate Program in Neuroscience, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Wendy M. Kohrt PhD,

    1. Division of Geriatric Medicine, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, Colorado, USA
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  • Cynthia L. Comella MD

    1. Department of Neurological Sciences, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Sue E. Leurgans had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.

  • Funding agencies: Supported by grant R01-NS28127-12 to 16 from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

  • Relevant conflicts of interest/financial disclosures: DMC received grant support from NIH and Michael J. Fox, and receives lecture and reviewer fees from NIH. JAR, FJD, and CP received grant support from NIH. SEL was a statistical consultant for this project through the University of Illinios at Chicago. DEV receives grant support from NIH, Michael J. Fox, and consults for projects at UT Southwestern Medical Center and Great Lakes NeuroTechnologies. MRR has scholarship support from the Foundation for Physical Therapy and received grant support from NIH. WMK receives grant support from NIH and DoD and consulting fees from NIH. CLC is or has received research support from Allergan Inc., Merz Pharmaceuticals, Ipsen Limited , NIH, and Parkinson Disease Foundation and consulting fees from Neupathe, Allergan Inc., Merz Pharmaceuticals, Ipsen Limited and Medtronic Corporation.

  • Full financial disclosures and author roles may be found in the online version of this article.

  • The sponsors were not involved in the design, conduct, collection, management, analysis, and/or interpretation of the study results and preparation, review, or approval of the article.

  • The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

Correspondence to: Daniel M. Corcos, PhD, Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1919 West Taylor, 650 AHSB (M/C 994), Chicago, IL 60612; dcorcos@uic.edu

ABSTRACT

The effects of progressive resistance exercise (PRE) on the motor signs of Parkinson's disease have not been studied in controlled trials. The objective of the current trial was to compare 6-, 12-, 18-, and 24-month outcomes of patients with Parkinson's disease who received PRE with a stretching, balance, and strengthening exercise program. The authors conducted a randomized controlled trial between September 2007 and July 2011. Pairs of patients matched by sex and off-medication scores on the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, motor subscale (UPDRS-III), were randomly assigned to the interventions with a 1:1 allocation ratio. The PRE group performed a weight-lifting program. The modified fitness counts (mFC) group performed a stretching, balance, and strengthening exercise program. Patients exercised 2 days per week for 24 months at a gym. A personal trainer directed both weekly sessions for the first 6 months and 1 weekly session after 6 months. The primary outcome was the off-medication UPDRS-III score. Patients were followed for 24 months at 6-month intervals. Of 51 patients, 20 in the PRE group and 18 in the mFC group completed the trial. At 24 months, the mean off-medication UPDRS-III score decreased more with PRE than with mFC (mean difference, −7.3 points; 95% confidence interval, −11.3 to −3.6; P<0.001). The PRE group had 10 adverse events, and the mFC group had 7 adverse events. PRE demonstrated a statistically and clinically significant reduction in UPDRS-III scores compared with mFC and is recommended as a useful adjunct therapy to improve Parkinsonian motor signs. © 2013 Movement Disorder Society

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