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Massage for Osteoarthritis Pain in the Knees

Knee Massage

Image credit: macniak / 123RF Stock Photo

Many people suffer from knee pain. This is sometimes caused by osteoarthritis. Many athletes suffer from this condition as do people who’ve been overweight or who are of advanced age. Still, there is a treatment option available to all of these people that has been shown to work in numerous case studies. That treatment is massage.

In a study released in 2012, those who underwent Swedish massage for the treatment of their osteoarthritis of the knee experienced improved flexibility and decreased pain over time. The specific strokes used were tapotement, effleurage, vibration, petrissage, skin rolling, and friction. To determine the results, a pain scale and range of motion tests were performed.

Those who weren’t in the control group experienced a dramatic improvement in their pain scale scores. Range of motion didn’t improve, but the reduction in pain was significant and lasted a considerable amount of time. This could spell dramatic changes in the treatment methods used for those with osteoarthritis in the knees.

At the moment, a traditional care routine involves the use of medications. While they have shown to be effective, overuse of medications can lead to toxicity and even tolerance in some patients. Surgery is often employed as well, which is an invasive and unfavorable way to treat the condition. Of course, serious manifestations of the disease would still require these treatment options.

Still, adding massage to the roster of treatment options would be excellent way to reduce the use of pharmaceuticals and the need for surgery. For some, early usage of this treatment method could prevent the need for surgery and may slow or stop the progression of the disease. At the end of the day, these methods are used for symptom relief, which is namely pain. If used early and regularly, however, this could maintain range of motion and flexibility in the joints and prevent the condition from worsening.

The 2012 study can be combined with the results of a 2006 study to show even more impressive benefits. Upon evaluation, massage could definitely be recommended for use in those with osteoarthritis of the knee. Specifically, a weekly 60-minute session could spell significant improvement for sufferers of the disease. This is why it’s worthwhile to investigate alternative treatment methods for medical conditions. Without further research, it would be impossible to say if health issues could be resolved with non-traditional medicine. At the very least, massage offers a fantastic supplement.

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