Occupational Therapy Program Can Improve Fibromyalgia Patients’ Lives, USC Study Finds

Occupational Therapy Program Can Improve Fibromyalgia Patients’ Lives, USC Study Finds
An occupational therapy intervention program can improve the quality of life, confidence and functional abilities of people with fibromyalgia and other chronic pain conditions, according to a study featured in the American Journal of Occupational Therapy. By involving patients in frequent interactions with occupational therapists who guide them, researchers aim for patients to gain motivation, identify solutions, and build healthy habits. The intervention, called Lifestyle Redesign, is the invention of researchers at University of Southern California (USC) Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy. “Having quantitative evidence for occupational therapy’s effectiveness in chronic pain management is really valuable,” Ashley Uyeshiro Simon, OTD, the study’s lead author and an assistant clinical professor at USC, said in a USC news release written by Mike McNulty. Simon developed the program together with colleague Chantelle Collins, also an associate clinical professor at USC. In the program, patient and therapist work together exploring weekly topics that might focus on physical activity, body mechanics, or preparing a plan, and for when pain strikes. In addition to fibromyalgia, people with lumbar back pain, complex regional pain syndrome, and other forms of myalgia were included in the program. “These types of diagnoses are long-term, difficult to manage and can’t just be fixed quickly,” said Simon. “It’s in these types
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