Pain-intensity and functional-disability decreased significantly among people with chronic nonspecific low back pain after receiving Thai massage therapy twice a week for four weeks, according to recent research.
Low back pain is a debilitating global problem causing disability around the world more so than any other condition. * This chronic back pain is often caused by factors that are NOT due to an underlying disease. Instead they are a result of things such as overuse injuries, prolonged sitting and sleeping in uncomfortable positions.
Opioids are commonly prescribed for low back pain when patients seek medical assistance.
The effectiveness of complementary practices such as massage therapy have been shown to improve health and well-being overall.
In a research study conducted at the orthopedic outpatient department, Lerdsin general hospital, Bangkok, Thailand, 120 hospital outpatients were randomized into traditional Thai massage therapy.
In order to qualify for the study, subjects have to had low back pain that was intermittent, tolerable and without a specific cause for at least 3 weeks.
Herbal hot packs along with stretching joint mobilization and acupressure on the Sen lines was included in the treatment.
Results of the research revealed a significant drop in pain intensity without any adverse effects.
“The traditional Thai massage and joint mobilization used in this study were equally effective for short-term reduction of pain and disability in patients with chronic nonspecific LBP. Both techniques were safe with short term effect in a chosen group of patients.”
Sources: Institute of Orthopaedics and Department of Academic Support, Lerdsin Hospital, Bangkok, Thailand; and Department of Thai Traditional and Alternative Medicine, Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi, Thailand. Originally published in June 2017 in the International Journal of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, 10(2), 3-8
*Hoy D, March L, Brooks P et al. The Global Burden of Low Back Pain: Estimates from the Global Burden of Disease 2010 Study. Ann Rheum Dis. 2014 Jun;73(6):968-74.