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Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
January, 2012, Vol. 12, Issue 01
Massage Therapy Reduces Pain for Patients in a Postoperative Thoracic Surgery Care Setting
By Massage Therapy Foundation Contributor
What's new in research? We at the Massage Therapy Foundation always want to know! This month's review sponsored by the Foundation is an informative study examining the efficacy and feasibility of using massage therapy within a postoperative thoracic surgery setting at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.
General thoracic surgery is provided to patients for a spectrum of diseases and conditions, "varying from malignancies of the lungs, esophagus, mediastinum, and chest wall to benign conditions of these same anatomical areas. The surgical procedures encompass either resection-type procedures, such as pulmonary lobectomy or esophagectomy, or reconstructive operations, such as bronchoplasty or antireflux procedures." Patients face considerable challenges with pain and discomfort after undergoing thoracic surgery. This pain is often long-term if it is not managed effectively in the postoperative stage.
Massage therapy has gained support as an effective intervention to improve patient experiences during hospitalization, particularly for pain reduction. While previous studies have identified benefits of massage, none have evaluated its use in reducing pain for thoracic surgery patients. According to Bauer and his colleagues, certain medical strategies have been developed to reduce pain and discomfort for patients undergoing thoracic surgery, however, many patients still suffer from pain and discomfort in the postoperative setting. These authors hypothesized that the patients who received massage therapy would benefit by having their post-surgical pain and discomfort managed. To test this hypothesis, they evaluated patients' reports of pain before and after massage treatments received in a thoracic surgery practice.
Bauer and colleagues used a descriptive pre-post measure evaluation design with a standard numeric pain rating scale. Patients who received massage reported pain scores on a scale of zero to 10; zero being no pain, and 10 being the worst possible pain. These scores were recorded before and after massage and throughout recovery. Descriptive comments provided by patients and staff also were recorded and analyzed.
Two massage therapists provided treatments. Each massage included 20 minutes of hands-on massage on the areas requested by the patient, typically the back, neck and shoulders, and sometimes the hands and feet. Patients were positioned to comfort; positioning depended on patient's comfort level and mobility. Therapists did not massage near surgical wounds. The two therapists in the study used several techniques and modalities including Swedish massage, craniosacral therapy, myofascial release, reflexology and diaphragmatic breathing. Depth and pressure of massage was light to moderate.
This study included a sample of 194 patients, with 160 completing the study. Patient characteristics were similar among the patients who provided responses, with an average age of 61 years and an equal number of males and females. Most patients received one individualized massage during their hospital stay (mean 1.2 massages), but 19 patients had two massages, and eight patients received three massages.
Study findings suggest "patients receiving massage therapy had significantly decreased pain scores after massage (p <= .001), and patients' comments were very favorable. Patients and staff were highly satisfied with having massage therapy available, and no major barriers to implementing massage therapy were identified." Only one patient out of the 160 receiving the massage reported a subjective negative experience. Patient responses after receiving a massage included: "I feel I can breathe again;" "That was wonderful, I can move my neck;" and "Before massage treatment pain was radiating, after treatment pain has completely stopped radiating." Staff comments related to massage therapy included: "The patients love it! They want another one;" "Once they try a massage they can't believe the difference. The pain is still there but they feel they can work with it;" and "Massage calms them."
The compelling findings of this pilot study indicate massage therapy is an effective intervention for helping patients deal with pain. Bauer and colleagues provide both subjective descriptions and objective measures of the benefits of massage therapy for thoracic surgical patients for pain management. Pain scores improved, and patient and staff comments were positive. Further, this study demonstrated the feasibility of integrating massage therapy into a high-volume thoracic surgical practice. Authors suggest, "Massage therapy in the hospital setting needs to be focused on individual patient symptoms, and then the therapy is individualized based on these symptoms, medical status, and positioning tolerance." Bauer and colleagues also suggest their findings warrant further research, particularly to determine optimal frequency, duration, and timing of treatment.
So, what do these findings mean for the massage profession and massage therapists? Postoperative massage therapy might have a significant role in pain management and the healing experience for patients recovering from thoracic surgery. Further, massage treatments can be integrated into hospital settings to facilitate pain symptom management. This research, and the growing knowledge base about the use of massage therapy in the clinical setting, is steadily growing. This work and others like it, published in the International Journal of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork provide excellent references for the evidence-based practice of massage therapy in clinical and non-clinical settings.
Original research study source: www.ijtmb.org/index.php/ijtmb/article/view/100/168.
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