Massage Therapy News and Research

Massage and Aromatherapy Massage Benefit Stroke Patients

Massage Magazine writes that research indicates stroke patients who received weekly sessions of aromatherapy back massage and foot baths showed significant improvement in stress and mood and sleep. The study, “The effects of aroma massage and foot bath on psychophysiological response in stroke patients,” involved 14 patients diagnosed with hemiplegia, which is paralysis on one side of the body.  Specifically, half of the patients received five 30-minute aromatherapy back session and five 30-minute foot baths in one week. The other half served as the control group.

The aromatherapy back massage included a mix of juniper, lavender, orange, patchouli and rosemary essential oils blended with jojoba oil. Each of the five massage sessions used the Swedish techniques of effleurage, petrissage, friction, tapotement and vibration. For the foot bath, subjects immersed their feet up to their ankles in water that was heated to 104 degrees. Each of the five foot baths lasted 30 minutes.  Outcomes were assessed before and after the one-week intervention period. Read more.

American Society of Clinical Oncology Endorses Integrative Oncology Guidelines for Breast Cancer Patients

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has endorsed integrative therapies, such as acupuncture, meditation, massage and yoga as evidence-based ways to manage symptoms and side effects of conventional breast cancer treatment, according to Fred Hutch Organization news. 

The endorsement, which was published earlier in June, came from an expert panel that reviewed a set of clinical practice guidelines therapies put out by the 15-year-old Society for Integrative Oncology (SIO). The panel did not endorse all of the practices recommended by the SIO but its endorsement indicated that it’s OK to integrate. The ASCO panel vetted and updated the available evidence compiled by SIO, then offered guidance for use of the practices.

Hutch news writes that the SIO guidelines were based on an analysis of peer-reviewed controlled trials conducted from 1990 t0 2013. “Studies had to include more than 50 percent breast cancer patients, or separately report results for breast cancer patients; use an integrative therapy as an intervention during standard treatment or address symptoms and side effects resulting from diagnosis and/or treatment; and address an endpoint of clinical relevance (that is, have a noticeable effect on a symptoms or side effect of treatment) for patients with breast cancer and breast cancer survivors. Read more.

De-Stress Days Gain Popularity

Friday, June 29, residents of New Orleans were treated to a “De-Stress Day” at City Hall.  New Orleanians were invited to the event, which was scheduled to run from 11 to 1 p.m.  Among the de-stressing agents on hand: therapy dogs to pet, yoga demonstrations, free blood pressure screenings by Access Health, live music and massages. There also were adoptable dogs and cats on hand.  It seems that anti-stress events are now regular features at some college campuses but might be a first for a city hall. Read more.