36º Congresso Brasileiro de Reumatologia

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Reiki as a Complementary Therapy for Fibromyalgia Patients and It’s Efficacy on Widespread Pain Index, Symptom Severity Scale and Pain Catastrophizing Scale: A Pilot-Study


Reiki is a form of energy medicine developed in Japan in which the healer channels “universal life energy” to the patient through light touch and positive healing intention. Reiki is now a part of a group called Integrative Medicine and has show potential beneficial effects in a lot of conditions, including cancers and chronic pain. The aim of this study is to identify the effect of reiki in fibromyalgia patients.

Materials and methods

Five patients were included in the study; all of them had fibromyalgia and depression diagnosis, and were treated by a clinical doctor. None had change in the medication during the study or started treatment recently. After the patients consent, they were required to fill a form with widespread pain index, symptom severity scale
and the pain catastrophizing scale. Then, once a week, they received reiki treatment with a Reiki Master. After one month, they had to fill the same form, to indentify the beneficial effect of the therapy.


The median age were 33 years-old (range 22 to 53 years). The male/females ratio was 1:4. Before the reiki treatment the median of the Widespread Pain Index was 10.6 places; the Symptom Severity Scale was 9 and the median of the visual analogue scale regarding the pain severity was 6.6. About the Pain Catastrophizing Scale, in the first component, called rumination, the median was 11 points; the median score of the magnification component was 6.4 and the median of the helplessness component was 10,4. After a month of reiki treatment, the median of the Widespread Pain Index became 5.2; the Symptom Severity Scale median was 6.2 and the median of the visual analogue scale was 3.4. Regarding the Pain Catastrophizing Scale, the rumination median was 5.8; the median of magnification was 3.2 and the median of the helplessness was 4.6.


The reiki therapy was able to decrease the severity of every aspect of fibromyalgia. All the patients reported improvement in the pain intensity and duration, quality of sleep and improvement of the mood. This was a small and short-term study, and therefore was lots of limitations; however, reiki is a promising complementary approach in rheumatology and should be more studied and used to improve our patient’s quality of life.


Complementary Therapies (Accupuncture, Mind-Body Therapies, Prolotherapy, Dance Therapy)


Gabriel Pacífico Seabra Nunes, Maria Auxiliadora de Araújo, Glaucilene Maciel Hauradou, Sandra Lúcia Euzébio Ribeiro