Non-pharmacologic therapies for systemic lupus erythematosus

Physical Exercise and Psychological Interventions Complement Usual Medical Care in Lupus.

Over the last two decades more research has been conducted which looks at non pharmacological therapies as a potential adjunct (add on) treatment to relieve lupus symptoms such a pain, fatigue, depression, quality of life and disease activity. Researchers in a new study conducted an updated literature review to bring together major findings and allow for some conclusions to be drawn.

Of the 15 trials, eight used exercise interventions, six used psychological interventions (one group psychotherapy, three cognitive behavioral therapies, one psychoeducation, one mindfulness-based cognitive therapy) and one used electro-acupuncture.

Findings from this effort concluded that physical exercise and psychological interventions showed promising results as additions to traditional medical care for improvement in fatigue, depression, pain and quality of life. However, the research analyzed included studies with relatively small sample sizes in each. This means that further large scale controlled studies with longer follow up periods are needed to better understand the long term impact on symptom management and improvements in quality of life.

For the full study please click here.