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ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
January, 2006, Vol. 06, Issue 01
Spotlight on Research: Massage Effective in Treating Young Children's Skin Conditions
By Michael Devitt
Editor's note: This periodic column keeps you abreast of the latest research documenting the benefits of massage and bodywork. Published research is summarized, with references to the full study text provided; abstracts of research projects planned or in progress are reproduced verbatim whenever possible.This month we look at the effectiveness of massage in treating young children's skin conditions.
Burns and eczema are among the most common pediatric skin conditions experienced in the United States. The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) estimates that up to 20 percent of all infants and young children suffer from eczema at any given time. While much less common, pediatric burns often are just as painful and, by some accounts, even more stressful; the procedures associated with changing burn dressings can be particularly traumatizing, and might cause anxiety in both children and their parents.
It is well-known that skin conditions such as eczema and burns can be stressful and harmful to children. It's also well-known that while these conditions usually are treated with medications or other standard procedures, a variety of alternative therapies also might be used to treat them, with outcomes similar, if not superior, to traditional care. In a recent issue of Dermatologic Clinics, researchers from Florida examined the use of massage in two studies on pediatric burns and atopic dermatitis. The studies, published as a single article, suggest massage can play a significant role in the treatment of both conditions, and can be a useful complement to standard methods of care.
Massage for Burns
In the first study, 24 children (average age 29.3 months) admitted to a burn unit at a large university hospital were randomized to either a massage therapy group or a control group. All of the children were scheduled to have the dressings on an existing burned changed. Approximately 30 minutes prior to dressing change, 23 of the children were administered an analgesic to help relieve pain.
In the control group, a massage therapist spent 15 minutes with the children prior to dressing change, sitting next to the child's bed and talking with the child. In the massage group, the children received a 15-minute massage from a trained therapist, with strokes applied to areas of the child's body that were not burned, using moderate pressure.
Dressings were changed by nurses unaware of which group each child had been assigned to. To determine incidence of pain between groups, an observer (also unaware of each child's group assignment) recorded a series of six "distress behaviors" in the children just prior to, and during, the dressing change.
Children given a massage before the dressing change "showed only an increase in torso movements" while their dressing was changed. The nurses "also reported less difficulty conducting the procedure" on children who had been massaged prior to dressing change.
In contrast, children who did not receive a massage showed increases in all of the other distress behaviors.
The authors concluded that children who had received a massage prior to dressing change "showed minimal distress behaviors and no increase in movement other than torso movement." They suggested future studies examine the effectiveness of teaching parents to perform massages on their children before burn care procedures, which could help to reduce the stress levels of all involved.
Massage for Atopic Dermatitis
In the second study, scientists recruited 20 children ages 2 to 8, all of whom had been diagnosed with atopic dermatitis, a type of eczema that causes severe itching and a red, raised rash on the skin. The children were randomized into two groups: half received "standard care" (consisting of emollients and topical corticosteroids) from a dermatologist, while the other half received standard care along with a daily massage.
In the massage therapy group, massages were performed by the children's parents. During the first session, a therapist gave the parents a 20-minute massage to familiarize them with massage techniques and how the massage felt. The therapist then demonstrated the same massage techniques on the child. At the end of the first session, the parents were given a videotape and a written description of the massage to take home and review.
The massage consisted of two standardized phases. First, the child was placed in a supine position, with the dermatitis medication applied as a moisturizer to ensure smooth stroking movements. Next, five regions of the child's body (face, chest, stomach, legs and arms) were massaged in sequence, with different techniques performed on different parts of the body. Any severely affected, sensitive areas of the body were avoided. Massages were administered daily for one month, with each massage lasting 20 minutes.
Regions of the Child's Body Massaged in SequenceFace
When compared to the standard care group, children receiving a daily massage showed a "statistically significant improvement" in a variety of symptoms associated with atopic dermatitis over the length of the study period. The only factor both groups showed similar improvements in was scaling.
The daily massage protocol appeared to have a positive affect on both parents and children. Parents who administered massages to their children, for example, showed decreased anxiety levels after the first massage session and by the last day of treatment, and reported their own feelings about their children "improved." Receiving massages had a likewise effect on the children, whose anxiety and activity levels improved throughout the course of care.
While the length of the study was rather brief, the researchers suggested continued massage likely would have improved the children's condition even further, and at worst would have maintained the improvements seen during the initial one-month treatment session.
"Although this study did not assess the long-term effects of the massage intervention, it is hypothesized that the observed improvement in the children's condition would stabilize or continue to improve if the parents continued to administer the massage protocol," they wrote. They added that parental massage "is a very cost-effective adjunct therapy" to standard care for atopic dermatitis, costing an average of $30 for patient.
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