Whole Body Vibration: A Viable Treatment Option to Promote Bone Health in Individuals Living with Chronic Conditions?, pp. 251-272
Authors: Marco Y. C. Pang, Ricky W. K. Lau, Tilda W.L. Teo, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
Abstract: It is well known that mechanical loading is a potent stimulus for bone formation. Vigorous loading exercises may induce positive effects on bone health in the elderly and those with chronic diseases, but individuals who are more physically impaired may not be able to tolerate such intensive training. Moreover, this approach involves an inherent risk of falls. Alternative strategies that are low-risk and effective for improving bone health among those with compromised bone mineral density are thus required. Animal studies have shown that high-frequency mechanical stress applied to bone, even at very low magnitudes, can effectively increase bone mass. Whole body vibration devices that are capable of delivering low-magnitude, high-frequency vibration to the skeleton may be a viable alternative. This chapter reviews the research findings on the effects of whole body vibration therapy in patients with different types of chronic diseases.