The impact of whole-body cryotherapy on parameters of spinal mobility in patients with ankylosing spondylitis
Background. The aim of our study was to assess the impact of whole-body cryotherapy with subsequent kinesitherapy on spinal mobility parameters in patients with ankylosing spondylitis. Material and methods. We enrolled 32 men with ankylosing spondylitis in a clinical trial. The subjects were randomly divided into 2 groups consisting of 16 persons, with no significant differences in age, duration, or stage of disease, treated with a cycle of 10 whole-body cryotherapy procedures with subsequent kinesitherapy or kinesitherapy alone, respectively. Routine spinal mobility parameters were determined for all patients before and after the end of the therapeutic cycle. Results. Significant improvement of spinal mobility was observed in both groups of patients, but in patients exposed to whole-body cryotherapy with subsequent kinesitherapy the percentage changes in the values of particular parameters were more distinct as compared to patients in whom kinesitherapy alone was used, mainly in respect to lumbar and thoracic spinal mobility. Conclusion. The use of whole-body cryotherapy as a component of comprehensive therapy in patients with ankylosing spondylitis produces significant improvements in spinal mobility parameters as compared to patients in whom kinesitherapy alone is used.