Research supports whole body vibration for treating osteoporosis

The positive effects of regular exercise on the prevention of the postmenopausal symptoms like have been widely accepted, and exercise has been encouraged to enhance muscle strength, flexibility and prevent bone loss in menopause leading to osteoporosis.

There are conflicting results among the different types of exercises during ageing, and walking and jogging modalities do not demonstrate consistent results, and are potentially harmful for people with impaired balance and flexibility. The safety of physical activity is an important consideration in the management of the patients with osteoporosis, due to the increased risk of falls.

Whole body vibration exercises, with appropriate parameters, (frequency of 30-35 Hz, 1-2mm amplitude), are considered a safe form of physical activity. The interaction of mechanical vibration with the structures of the body induces the process of bone formation. Also, WBV may affect the levels of growth hormone, parathyroid hormone and testosterone in serum, which may prevent muscle wastage and osteoporosis.

A recent study published in the Journal of Musculoskeletal and Neuronal Interactions performed a literature review of scientific papers looking at the effects of whole body vibration on osteoporosis in post- menopausal women, and found that the majority of studies have shown an improvement of bone mineral density and other muscle and functional outcomes, like reduction of falls, showing it to be a relevant non-pharmacological option recommended for the management of postmenopausal osteoporosis.