Massage Relieves Chronic Back Pain

Study Finds Effectiveness




Valua Vitaly/Shutterstock.com

Researchers from Indiana University-Purdue University, in Indianapolis, set out to find out if massage therapy—typically an out-of-pocket expense not covered under most insurance plans—can provide effective treatment for individuals suffering with chronic back pain.

The study followed 76 primary care patients with chronic back pain for 24 weeks. The researchers measured pain, disability and quality of life at the beginning of the study, after 12 weeks and again after 24 weeks of massage therapy. Each patient was referred to a licensed massage therapist for 10 no-cost sessions in a real-world environment during the initial 12 weeks.

More than half of the patients that completed the core study reported clinically meaningful improvements for physical and mental measures. For bodily pain, 40 percent were clinically improved. Older adults and Baby Boomers reported the highest percentage of changes. Plus, the study found that sufferers that avoided taking painkillers were twice as likely to experience reduced pain than those using opioids.


This article appears in the August 2017 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Awake Parenting

Children are not ours to possess or own, but rather to guide into living fearlessly and authentically.

Pets Love Music

With their ears attuned to different frequencies, horses neigh to Bach, cats groove to New Age, and dogs de-stress to “Greensleeves.”

Championing Holistic Athletes

Athletes in a wide range of sports are finding that natural diets and holistic healing modalities help them achieve their personal best.

Milk Chocolate Also Benefits Heart Health

Harvard researchers found that people eating one to 12 ounces a month of milk chocolate – but less than 30 ounces – had a lower risk of irregular heartbeat.

Gut Bacteria Imbalance Linked to Chronic Fatigue

In a Columbia University study, people with chronic fatigue syndrome were found to have an imbalance in the levels of certain gut bacteria.

Add your comment:
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »This Month

Zen Shiatsu Certification Comes to Watertown Center for Healing Arts

A certified Shiatsu practitioner program will be available once more in Boston at the Watertown Center for Healing Arts.

Women’s 2018 Spiritual Retreat — India and Dubai

Bhavna Srivastava, founder and CEO of Bhvana’s Wellness Group, in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, has announced the 2018 Women’s Spiritual Retreat from February 15 to 25 in India and Dubai.

The New "Enough" Companion Guidebook is Released

Activities and exercises to help individuals embody the message that we are “enough”, inseparable from the universe and its infinite ability to create plenty.

Holistic Holiday Decompression and Healing

To help combat the barrage of emotional intensity and stress that the holidays can bring, Sacred Temple Arts is offering special holiday sessions this month.

Feeling Uplifted

Two of the trickiest topics to discuss are politics and religion. I’m giving myself a pass this month because what’s resonating within feels deeper than what the general term religion evokes for me.

Tick Tock, It’s Lyme Again

Although antibiotics are often prescribed as a mainstream remedy or cure-all for Lyme, it is becoming evident that antibiotics may only provide some initial relief of symptoms.