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Massage Therapy Helps Patients with Fibromyalgia

Posted by floriza in Massage Therapy

A recent study published in the journal, Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, shows that a particular type of massage therapy can benefit fibromyalgia sufferers. The article is entitled, “Benefits of Massage-Myofascial Release Therapy on Pain, Anxiety, Quality of Sleep, Depression, and Quality of Life in Patients with Fibromyalgia.”

The study involved 58 patients, of which 30 were treated and 29 were in the control group. Those who received treatment were given 90-minute massage-myofascial release therapy sessions every week for a period of 20 weeks. The massage was performed on a variety of areas of the body. The 29 patients in the control group received one weekly sham treatment of magnetotherapy during the 20-week period.

The groups were asked about a variety of criteria after the 20 weeks, as well as one and six months following the treatment period. These criteria included pain, anxiety, depression, sleep, and general quality of life. The treatment group reported significantly more improvement in all areas except depression, as compared to the control group. After the six-month period, however, the only improvement that remained significant was in sleep quality.

Since the control of symptoms is all that is possible at this time in the treatment of fibromyalgia, myofascial release massage therapy may be helpful in improving some of the debilitating symptoms of the syndrome.

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a chronic syndrome that involves extreme fatigue and muscular and joint pain that can sometimes be debilitating. This pain can lead to other problems, such as headaches, joint diseases, bursitis, herniated spinal discs, spinal stenosis, and tendinitis, to name a few. There is no known cure for the syndrome.

What is Myofascial Release Massage Therapy?

“Fascia” is the connective tissue that separates the different layers of muscle and protects most of the body’s structures. Inflammation caused by a number of potential factors can interfere with the fascia’s ability to function. When the fascia remains inflamed for too long, fibrosis is the result. The irritation from the inflammation causes additional inflammation.

Myofascial release massage therapy can assist in reducing this condition and stopping the cycle of swelling that leads to more swelling. The massage techniques increase blood circulation and help to gently stretch the muscles and fascia to release the tension that restricts the fascia from normal movement.

Massage therapy in New Jersey often includes myofascial release for the treatment of fibromyalgia and other conditions.

 

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