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Effect of Massage Therapy on Children with Asthma

Author(s): Afsaneh Nekooee |  Jamal Faghihinia |  Ramin Ghasemy |  Mahin Ghaibizadeh |  Zohreh Ghazavi

Journal: Iranian Journal of Pediatrics
ISSN 2008-2142

Volume: 18;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 123;
Date: 2008;
Original page

Keywords: Massage therapy | Spirometry | Alternative medicine

Objective: Asthma is the most common chronic illness in childhood and despite significant improvements for disease control and development of many different drugs, its prevalence is increasing worldwide.  Recently, the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in treatment of many diseases is increasing.  The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of massage therapy on children with asthma. Material & Methods: In this work, 44 asthmatic children aged 5 to 14 years were studied in the allergy and asthma clinic. The samples were chosen randomly divided into two groups. The first group received massage therapy the second group received routine therapy and care (control group).  Parents in the massage group were instructed and asked to conduct a 20 minutes child massage every night at bedtime for one month. The massage involved stroking and kneading motions in face, head, neck, shoulders, arms, hands, legs, feet and back. Data was collected through interview and spirometry measurements. The control group received only standard asthma therapy for one month. A spirometry along with exercise was done in both groups at baseline. A one month ambulatory observation followed. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyze the findings. Findings: There was a statistically significant difference in mean spirometric indexes in massage group at baseline and after one month follow up [forced vital capacity (FVC) with (P=0.05) Forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) with (P=0.02) and FEV1 after exercise with (P= 0.0005). Indeed; there is significant difference between mean changes of FVC (2-1) with (P=0.05) and FEV1 (2-1) in two groups with (P=0.04). Conclusion: According to the obtained results, daily massage can improve airway tonicity, decrease airway sensitivity, and better control of asthma. Applying this method can decline the use of non reasonable drugs and can be considered as a complementary method to pharmaceutical methods.
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