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Massages can help your osteoarthritic (OA) knee!

Massage has been shown to be a useful adjunct to compliment exercise and weight loss in the management of painful conditions such as arthritis.

A study conducted by Adam Perlman and colleagues (1) studied the effects of massages on people with OA knees.

They compared a weekly 1-hour full body Swedish massage, to a 1-hour light touch massage, to peoples’ usual care.

The results found that after the initial 8 weeks, the Swedish massage group had significantly improved Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Arthritis Index (WOMAC) scores compared to the other groups. This self-administered assessment measures peoples’ pain, stiffness, and physical function for people with hip and knee OA.

This study suggests that for short-term pain relief and improved physical function (up to 8 weeks), a weekly 1-hour full body Swedish massage can be beneficial.

This is GREAT considering the alternatives are usually pharmacological, which can often be over-prescribed or ineffective and may have harmful long-term effects.

Deep tissue massage is also a useful adjunct for those patients waiting for a total knee replacement as it helps to relieve tight posterior chain muscles preparing the limb for the upcoming surgery

References;

Perlman, A., Fogerite, S., Glass, O., Bechard, E., Ali, A., Njike, V., Pieper, C., Dmitrieva, N., Luciano, A., Rosenberger, L., Keever, T., Milak, C., Finkelstein, E., Mahon, G., Campanile, G., Cotter, A. and Katz, D. (2018). Efficacy and Safety of Massage for Osteoarthritis of the Knee: a Randomized Clinical Trial. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 34(3), pp.379-386.