Massage and Osteoarthritis

A 16 week clinical study was carried out by researchers at Yale Prevention Research Centre and the University of Medicine and

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Dentistry, New Jersey to identify the potential benefits of Swedish massage on osteoarthritis patients experiencing limited range of motion, stiffness and pain. The study used 68 participants with a confirmed diagnosis of osteoarthritis of the knee. They were randomly assigned to either an intervention group or a wait list control group. The intervention group received massage immediately for one hour twice a week over 4 weeks. This was then followed by a massage once a week for 4 weeks.

The wait list control group was made to wait 8 weeks before they received massage therapy. Both groups continued taking their usual medication throughout the study.

The results found that after the first 8 weeks of massage therapy the intervention group had less pain, increased flexibility and improved range of motion. The wait list control group showed no changes in their symptoms. However, after this group was given 8 weeks of massage therapy they too experienced similar benefits of massage as the intervention group did.

Adam Perlman M.D one of the researchers involved in the study has said “Our results suggest massage therapy can be used in conjunction with conventional treatment for osteoarthritis.” – Archives of Internal Medicine, Vol. 166, No. 22 (December 11, 2006)

The study was published in Archives of Internal Medicine, Vol. 166, No. 22 (December 11, 2006) and you can read more about it here http://news.yale.edu/2006/12/11/swedish-massage-benefits-osteoarthritis-patients