Researchers at Peninsula Medical School, in Exeter, UK reviewed all studies of Pilates vs placebo to treat low back pain.
First, the details.
4 studies involving Pilates to manage low back pain were included.
The quality of the research was relatively low, based on the Oxford (Jadad) scale.
All studies differed in terms of patient characteristics, control groups, inclusion and exclusion criteria, and outcome measures, making a meta-analysis not feasible.
And, the results.
Some evidence supported the effectiveness of Pilates in the management of low back pain.
No definite conclusions were possible.
The bottom line?
The authors were disappointed. They recommended further research with larger groups of patients and clearer definitions of the standard care and comparable outcome measures.
Earlier this year researchers at the Universidade Estadual de Londrina-UEM, in Brazil conducted a review and concluded, “The Pilates method did not improve functionality and pain in patients who have low back pain when compared with control and lumbar stabilization exercise groups.
John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.