Article

Physiological and clinical changes after therapeutic massage of the neck and shoulders

Neuromechanics Research Laboratory, Department of Kinesiology, Auburn University, Auburn, AL 36849-5323, USA.
Manual therapy (Impact Factor: 1.76). 05/2011; 16(5):487-94. DOI: 10.1016/j.math.2011.04.002
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Little is known regarding the physiological and clinical effects of therapeutic massage (TM) even though it is often prescribed for musculoskeletal complaints such as chronic neck pain. This study investigated the influence of a standardized clinical neck/shoulder TM intervention on physiological measures assessing α-motoneurone pool excitability, muscle activity; and the clinical measure of range of motion (ROM) compared to a light touch and control intervention. Flexor carpi radialis (FCR) α-motoneurone pool excitability (Hoffmann reflex), electromyography (EMG) signal amplitude of the upper trapezius during maximal muscle activity, and cervical ROM were used to assess possible physiological changes and clinical effects of TM. Sixteen healthy adults participated in three, 20 min interventions: control (C), light touch (LT) and therapeutic massage (TM). Analysis of Covariance indicated a decrease in FCR α-motoneurone pool excitability after TM, compared to both the LT (p = 0.0003) or C (p = 0.0007) interventions. EMG signal amplitude decreased after TM by 13% (p < 0.0001), when compared to the control, and 12% (p < 0.0001) as compared to LT intervention. The TM intervention produced increases in cervical ROM in all directions assessed: flexion (p < 0.0001), lateral flexion (p < 0.0001), extension (p < 0.0001), and rotation (p < 0.0001). TM of the neck/shoulders reduced the α-motoneurone pool excitability of the flexor carpi radialis after TM, but not after the LT or C interventions. Moreover, decreases in the normalized EMG amplitude during MVIC of the upper trapezius muscle; and increases in cervical ROM in all directions assessed occurred after TM, but not after the LT or C interventions.

1 Follower
 · 
385 Views
  • Manual therapy 12/2011; 16(6):521. DOI:10.1016/j.math.2011.09.007 · 1.76 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To investigate acute effects of traditional Thai massage (TTM) on brain electrical activity (electroencephalogram (EEG) signals), anxiety and pain in patients with scapulocostal syndrome (SCS). A single-blind, randomized clinical trial. The School of Physical Therapy, Faculty of Associated Medical Sciences, Khon Kaen University, Thailand. Forty patients, who were diagnosed with SCS, were randomly allocated to receive a 30-min session of either TTM or physical therapy (PT) using ultrasound therapy and hot packs. Electroencephalogram (EEG), State Anxiety Inventory (STAI), and pain intensity rating. Results showed that both TTM and PT were associated with significant decreases in anxiety and pain intensity (p<0.01). However, there was a significantly greater reduction in anxiety and pain intensity for the TTM group when compared with the PT group. Analysis of EEG in the TTM group showed a significant increase in relaxation, manifested as an increase in delta activity (p<0.05) and a decrease in theta, alpha and beta activity (p<0.01). Similar changes were not found in the PT group. The EEG measures were also significantly different when compared between the groups (p<0.01), except for delta activity (p=0.051), indicating lower states of arousal with the TTM treatment. It is suggested that TTM provides acute neural effects that increase relaxation and decrease anxiety and pain intensity in patients with SCS.
    Complementary therapies in medicine 08/2012; 20(4):167-74. DOI:10.1016/j.ctim.2012.02.002 · 2.22 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Falls are the primary cause of accidental death in older persons, producing increased morbidity, decreased independence, and billions in medical costs annually. Massage therapy (MT) may produce adaptations that decrease risk of falling. If MT can improve stability in older persons, it may provide a new intervention for this issue. Determine the acute effects of a 60-minute MT treatment on static and functional balance, neurological measures, heart rate, and blood pressure in healthy, older individuals. Laboratory A 2 by 4 (treatment by time) mixed factorial experimental design for the cardiovascular and postural control variables; independent variables were treatment with two levels (control, MT) and time with four levels (pretreatment baseline, immediate post-treatment, 20-minute post-treatment, 60-minute post-treatment). Neurological measures utilized a 2 by 2 mixed design, with testing conducted pre- and 60-minutes post-treatment. Thirty-five healthy, older volunteers (19 male and 16 female; ages 62.9 ± 4.6). A 60-minute full-body therapeutic massage. The control group rested quietly in the treatment room. Static (double-legged) and functional (single-legged) postural control with eyes-open and eyes-closed; Hoffmann-reflex measures; heart rate, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure. MT significantly decreased rectangular displacement area in both the eyes-open and eyes-closed, double-legged stance conditions (p < 0.05); displacement velocity in both eyes-open conditions (p < .05); and systolic and diastolic blood pressure (p < .05), while increasing heart rate (p < .05). MT also significantly lowered H(max)/M(max) ratios compared to controls (p = .002). Decreased H(max)/M(max) measures were correlated to improved stability. A single, 60-minute, full-body massage therapy treatment was shown to have a stabilizing effect on measures of static and dynamic balance and physiological factors related to stability in older adults. MT should be investigated as a potential intervention to decrease falls in older individuals.
    International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork Research Education & Practice 09/2012; 5(3):16-27. DOI:10.3822/ijtmb.v5i3.152
Show more