resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Physical Exam 101: The Hands
I am sure you are familiar with the old adage: "When the only tool in your toolbox is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail."
Medical Qigong for the Heart: Part III
Part 1 and Part II of this series focused on the physical aspect of the Heart and mental emotional aspects of the Heart respectively. Now, I would like to focus on the spiritual aspect of the Heart.
Knee Pain From the Kinetic Chain
As practitioners of manual medicine, chiropractors often treat patients suffering from knee pain.
Coding for the Subluxation: ICD-9 vs. ICD-10
When I attended chiropractic school, I was taught that chiropractors approach health care differently than the traditional medical establishment.
Why You Should Include the Single-Leg Stance Test in Every Patient Assessment
The single-leg stance (SLS) test, also known as the single-limb stance test, unipedal stance test or one-legged stance / balance test, is often used in the geriatric population to assess static postural and balance control.
Peer Points: Always Seeking To Grow
Ellen "Kiki" Geary has spent the last decade honing her craft. As a specialist in integrative holistic care, she went straight from completing her master's degree in acupuncture and chinese herbal medicine from Bastyr University to building a successful and thriving practice in the small community of Anacortes, Washington.
New Medical Technologies You Need to Know
We're all familiar with how fast computers become obsolete, as well as the rapid pace of development in the field of cell phone technology. The latest smart phones are far more powerful than desktop computers were only a few years ago.
By the Numbers: 3 Common Financial Mistakes With Major Consequences
Warren Buffett is on record for sharing the hidden art of becoming wealthy and making it simple enough for anyone to grasp.
Curbing Label Overwhelm
For the average consumer, reading a food package can be overwhelming: natural, organic, non-GMO, gluten free, free range ... you get the picture.
A History Worth Telling
The popularity and the use of acupuncture for the treatment of animals in the United States is at its peak.
Remembering Clarence Gonstead and 50 Years of the Gonstead Clinic
Dr. Clarence Selmer Gonstead (1898-1978) took chiropractic practice from back-alley bone setting to an understandable biomechanical science. His life was dedicated to clinical competency.
Are You a Bad Chiropractic Patient?
My father was a great DC. In fact, as you might expect, he was the doctor of chiropractic I measured all other doctors against. Sadly, he died at age 61 when I was in my early 30s.
Building From the Bottom Up
I caught up with my dear friend Honora Wolfe, in her Colorado painting studio where, if she is not praying in Bhutan or doing charitable work in a Nepali free clinic, she spends most of her time now.
Vaccines and Chiropractic: Evidence-Based Medicine or Medical Dogma?
Right or wrong, the chiropractic profession has historically been against vaccinations. However, a growing trend within the profession is seeking to reverse this position.
Finders Keepers: The Secret to Relationship-Based Marketing
Becoming a successful practitioner has less to do with what you learned in school, and more to do with your ability to find new patients and keep them!
Immunizations by Colorado DCs: Really?
You probably didn't hear about it, but back on Nov. 21, 2013, the Board of Directors of the Colorado Chiropractic Association (CCA) adopted "immunization authority" for Colorado DCs as its No. 2 legislative goal.
The Science of Stretching
In 1986, Rob DeCastella set a course record by running the Boston Marathon in 2:07:51, just 39 seconds off the world record.
Fibromyalgia: Put the Pain in Its Place
While some fibromyalgia patients respond favorably to regular chiropractic care, others experience minimal relief. Unfortunately, many of these patients must rely on pharmacological management to relieve their constant pain.
A Guide for Talking to Doctors about Acupuncture and Brain Chemistry
Before I begin any discussion of how to talk about the effects of acupuncture on brain chemistry, nervous and endocrine function, it is essential to understand just what physicians most need help with.
August, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 08
A Definition of Medical Massage
By W.D. "Peter" Lane, LMT, CNMT, NCTMB
There is a need to define the frequently used term "medical massage." One proposed definition would require a medical massage therapist to have significantly more training to qualify for licensure.The curriculum for medical massage would include cadaver studies, chemistry and nutrition, as well as an internship. The state would provide a separate license for a medical massage therapist, which would allow the practitioner to bill insurance. The insurance component would compensate a therapist for the additional required education. A medical massage therapist would work with a patient's primary care physician to provide optimum health for the patient.
One of the most vexing issues facing the massage therapy industry today concerns the term "medical massage." All health care professionals know what it is, yet few are able to define it. Yet, when we as bodywork practitioners answer the question of what medical massage is, we will further the goal of legitimizing and establishing advanced bodywork in the health care environment.
Why is "medical massage" creating such a stir in the massage and medical community at large? Who should be allowed to practice medical massage and how? When is it indicated and when is it not? I attempt to answer these questions from the standpoint of a licensed massage therapist and a certified neuromuscular therapist who has been treating patients in New Mexico for the past 12 years. My opinions are based on practicing in both the massage and medical environments.
I have come to these opinions based on a sincere desire to see the perception, understanding and appreciation of bodywork advanced throughout the U.S. with some degree of uniformity. More importantly, the bodywork industry needs a universal definition so when a patient seeks out the services of a medical massage therapist he or she will know that therapist is licensed and properly trained to treat their pathology. It's important to define medical massage to both eliminate imposters and to protect legitimate medical massage therapists.
In my opinion, medical massage should:
These days, many other definitions of medical massage are floating around the country. Some serve the limited financial gain of a person or organization promoting a particular definition. Some definitions state medical massage should only be practiced in a doctor's office under the absolute control of an MD or DC. If practiced in a PT clinic, it must be under the domain of a PT. One organization states only students who take their "national certification examination" in medical massage should be recognized as a medical massage therapist.
From an insurance billing perspective, there has been recent litigation attempting to prevent a bodyworker from filing insurance unless they are a "medical massage therapist." Fortunately, when the judge asked for a definition of medical massage and none could be offered, he ruled in favor of the massage therapist. It has become quite clear these definitions do not have at their core the benefit of the patient.
Under the definition I propose, an LMMT (licensed medical massage therapist) should be someone who has received training requiring more than the universal 500-hour training threshold that has become the norm for massage therapists. The curriculum should require more hours in anatomy and physiology, pathology, patient assessment, kinesiology, musculoskeletal anatomy, including cadaver studies, chemistry and nutrition. The curriculum would include alternative therapy electives, a segment on business and ethics, practice management and insurance billing.
I also propose a significant clinical practicum and internship. Included in this formula is a continuing education requirement that exceeds the current eight to 16 continuing education units required biannually by many states. The extra education can be accomplished within the context of a 2,000 to 2,400-hour program similar to the structure of training programs in place in Canada where 2,200 to 3,000-hour programs are standard.
An LMMT would have the option of practicing in a controlled environment such as an HMO, working in private practice or something in between. The state would be required to adopt separate licensure for LMMTs. Furthermore, the LMMT automatically should be included in the mix of approved therapies for insurance billing.
The benefits for patients and therapists are obvious. The patient will know his or her therapist is properly trained, qualified and competent to treat the condition they have been referred for. The therapist will have the satisfaction of knowing their training will bring measurable results to the patient and they will be compensated for their work by insurance. The insurance industry benefits by knowing an LMMT is ethically and legally following a standard of treatment and documentation. By arriving at a national consensus about the definition and training of an LMMT, the U.S. will have gained a cost-effective tool in containing spiraling health care costs.
A quality-driven, credible medical massage therapy program should be predicated on proper program development and organization complimented by a competent and experienced teaching staff and utilized in an active clinical environment. Too often, education and competency have not paralleled each other and curriculum has not been problem-centered and patient-based.
The following curriculum outline is designed to assist preeminent institutes for higher education in the medical massage industry. The medical massage program can be implemented in stages as instructors are trained and certified or offered as a comprehensive second-tiered advanced program.
Medical Massage Therapy Curriculum Outline
Anatomy and Physiology:
ACI-Cell anatomy and physiology
The chemistry and physiological processes of the body.
Musculoskeletal pathology and related disease processes.
Nutrition and your patient. Pharmacological and nutritional interactions and outcomes.
Medical Massage Theory and Disciplines:
Assessment Procedures and Protocols
Advanced Musculoskeletal Palpation:
Cadaver Dissection I-V
Medical Massage Clinical Practicum
Medical Massage Externship Program
Business and Ethics:
Insurance billing for the medical massage therapist.
History of Medical Massage
W.D. "Peter" Lane is director of the NeuroMuscular Therapy Center of New Mexico in Albuquerque, N.M. He is an instructor of anatomy and physiology and maintains a private practice treating patients who present with a variety of soft-tissue dysfunctions. For more information about the NeuroMuscular Therapy Center of New Mexico visit www.salubria.org.
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