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Keywords:

  • Vibration therapy;
  • severe disability;
  • stress;
  • hormone response;
  • cortisol;
  • testosterone;
  • anxiety state

Abstract

Purpose

To assess the effects of vibration therapy (VT) on quality of life and hormone response in severely disabled patients compared with placebo.

Design

A longitudinal prospective, double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled trial, with pre and postintervention assessments.

Methods

A total of 20 severely disabled individuals were recruited from a National Reference Centre in Spain: 13 (65%) men and 7 (35%) women, 45.5 ± 9.32 years of age (range 41: 22–63). We evaluated their physical stress and state anxiety.

Results

No statistically significant changes were found in the socio-psychological variables studied, while in the experimental group state anxiety decreased significantly with p < 0.01 (Z = 2.38; one-tailed p = .009) and, among the biological variables, the level of cortisol fell (p = 0.03).

Conclusion

Short periods of exposure to low-frequency and low-amplitude local vibration are a safe and effective mechanical stimulus that can have a positive effect in terms of hormone response.

Clinical Relevance: VT can be considered to have an anti-stress effect.