Objective: To evaluate the safety of isokinetic knee extensor strength training, and its effectiveness with regard to knee extension, in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Methods: Nine women with RA, all in functional stage II or III, underwent a low-intensity strengthening protocol with 48 repetitions at 50% of maximal voluntary contraction, 3 times per week for 3 weeks, using an isokinetic dynamometer.
Results: Five patients had knee synovitis at entry; but neither synovitis nor joint pain increased. The mean gain in strength was 21%.
Conclusion: This training method was effective and safe in patients with RA.