Author(s): Kotowski SE, Davis KG
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: With the recent trend of increasing obesity in the United States, more immediate health outcomes such as reduced musculoskeletal pain may be more effective in encouraging compliance. The study objective was to investigate the relationship between weight loss and changes in musculoskeletal pain. PARTICIPANTS: Thirty-five females who recently enrolled into a weight loss program were enrolled into the study. METHODS: The impact of weight loss on musculoskeletal pain in the short-term was assessed by tracking pain and weight loss during bi-weekly visits to a weight loss clinic. During a 12-week prospective study, the pain ratings in 9 body regions measured during the bi-weekly weigh-ins at the clinic. RESULTS: A significant association was found between weight loss and reduction of pain in the elbow, upper back, lower back, and hip regions as well as overall pain. CONCLUSIONS: The significant trends between weight loss and corresponding reduction in pain provide support to weight-loss management providers that may have more immediate relevance - a quick impact on pain may encourage compliance with weight loss programs. While the trends for weight and pain are intriguing, future research will need to indentify the underlying mechanism for the reduced pain. One potential mechanism may be that a reduction of weight reduces the biomechanical stress on the load bearing joints, reducing pain responses.
This article was published in Work
and referenced in Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy