ISSN: 2544-4395
Physiotherapy Quarterly
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vol. 31
Original paper

Efficacy of active stretching exercises against symptoms of primary dysmenorrhoea in young adult females: a randomized controlled trial

Zizi M. Ibrahim
Bayader S. Alharkan
Ebtehaj H. Alanzi
Haya A. Alnasban
Maha M. Alsuwailem
Wafa K. Al Khalil

Rehabilitation Sciences Department, College of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Titanium Basketball Team, Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Physiother Quart. 2023;31(3) 46-52
Online publish date: 2022/05/18
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Primary dysmenorrhea symptoms affect most women’s daily life activities. The aim of the current study was to assess the efficacy of active stretching exercises in reducing pain intensity and improving menstruation characteristics of young adult females.

Thirty-three females with primary dysmenorrhea, were randomly assigned into three equal groups; group A (n = 11) practiced a supervised active stretching program three times a week for four weeks, group B (n = 11) practiced a non-supervised active stretching three times a week for four weeks and a control group C (n = 11). Pain intensity and menstruation characteristics were measured by Visual Analog Scale (VAS) and Verbal Multidimensional Scoring System (VMS) respectively, before and at the end of the study. Kruskal-Wallis test was used to test differences between groups; While Wilcoxon Signed-Ranks test was used to within-group comparison.

A significant reduction in pain intensity was obtained in both intervention groups (A&B) (p = 0.003; 0.007 respectively), whereas post-treatment comparison between groups revealed a statistically significant reduction in pain intensity in favor of group A (p ˂ 0.001). A significant improvement in menstruation characteristics was found in group A (p = 0.007) with non-significant improvements in either group B or the control group C (p = 0.07; 1.0 respectively).

Both supervised and non-supervised active stretching exercises could provide a safe non-pharmacological alternative for pain relief in primary dysmenorrhea.


menstruation, muscle stretching exercises, pain management, verbal multidimensional scoring system, visual analog scale

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