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Stress hormone production reduced by massage therapy ? where is the proof ?

Please see chris moyers article below.
http://www.ijtmb.org/index.php/ijtmb/article/view/30/39
Some interesting info re affective massage therapy.
What do you think.
Regards steve

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Hi Marissa, I am with you in trying to stay neutral, and you are so right in the example you give re Reiki =I dont want or feel I need answeres as to how or why it works.But say massage therapy on neck muscles was proved as outright the "best" treatment for high blood pressure then thats surely got to be good thing right!
We dont ever need to go to war on here so long as we all try to understand one another. I like Dustin, would never have thought there was so much good information (yes you may have to read it twice) to be had in an artical like that!
Being honest I would not usually even read that kind of material its only this recession here in the UK has given me time to do that and my eyes have been opened to the predudice I held.

Marissa Macias said:
This is where "medical" and "complementary" treatments start to blur around the edges and go to war. Science can not explain everything. There are too many "unexplained" occurrences in this delightful world to suggest otherwise. Let this be known here and now: I am not picking and or choosing either side. Remaining politically neutral on this. Controlled factors, uncontrolled factors, as long as it works for that particular individual, who are we to judge? The mind is a powerful motivator. What may work for me could be completely debunked with a scientific study, and "knowing" those scientific results could very well cause complete melt down. Again this is where the medical community is struggling to accept something that can not nor ever will be placed in it's tidy little hole. And this is where the complementary treatments are unable to sufficiently state a solid "truth" in statement. Stephen, Reiki... Some things are explained, but it is not uniformly accepted. Am I making sense? I can hear it, see it, but not explain it suitably!
Hi Dustin so glad you found the article of great interest, I like you had to read it twice to really "get it".
Like you say this site has so much to offer. I think you will find the
http://www.massageprofessionals.com/group/EBMT and many others interesting and fun.
Regards steve
RE: reading things twice. I often talk with my students about this; the more technical an article or piece of information is, the more I find it is important to read it at least twice. I'm glad someone mentioned this and that you are reiterating it.

Since we are talking about some things I myself have written, I will add that I work very hard in my scientific writing to make it as accessible as possible! It's not always easy to do, though, and sometimes people have an automatic reaction to reading anything that is scientific or technical in nature, which I can at least partially understand. Nevertheless, I hope that massage therapists do continue to try and work with the interesting research that is out there, and that they do keep up with and even contribute to the recently established online massage therapy journal available at: www.ijtmb.org . Note that there are distinct research, practice, and education sections.

-CM

Stephen Jeffrey said:
Hi Dustin so glad you found the article of great interest, I like you had to read it twice to really "get it".
Like you say this site has so much to offer. I think you will find the
http://www.massageprofessionals.com/group/EBMT and many others interesting and fun.
Regards steve
I'd like to add something to this remark, if I may. We should make a distinction between "going to war" and having a scientific or professional disagreement. We do not need to agree on everything, nor is it necessary to always be neutral or position oneself "in the middle of the road" on scientific matters. Discussion and comparison of theories and evidence is possible and even productive, and does not need to devolve into a flame war or a personal issue. Indeed, when such a "war" occurs, progress is prevented or even lost.

I look forward to such discussions.

It might even interest you to know that I have some scientific opinions on reiki. :)

-CM

Stephen Jeffrey said:
Hi Marissa, I am with you in trying to stay neutral, and you are so right in the example you give re Reiki =I dont want or feel I need answeres as to how or why it works.But say massage therapy on neck muscles was proved as outright the "best" treatment for high blood pressure then thats surely got to be good thing right!
We dont ever need to go to war on here so long as we all try to understand one another. I like Dustin, would never have thought there was so much good information (yes you may have to read it twice) to be had in an artical like that!
Being honest I would not usually even read that kind of material its only this recession here in the UK has given me time to do that and my eyes have been opened to the predudice I held.

Marissa Macias said:
This is where "medical" and "complementary" treatments start to blur around the edges and go to war. Science can not explain everything. There are too many "unexplained" occurrences in this delightful world to suggest otherwise. Let this be known here and now: I am not picking and or choosing either side. Remaining politically neutral on this. Controlled factors, uncontrolled factors, as long as it works for that particular individual, who are we to judge? The mind is a powerful motivator. What may work for me could be completely debunked with a scientific study, and "knowing" those scientific results could very well cause complete melt down. Again this is where the medical community is struggling to accept something that can not nor ever will be placed in it's tidy little hole. And this is where the complementary treatments are unable to sufficiently state a solid "truth" in statement. Stephen, Reiki... Some things are explained, but it is not uniformly accepted. Am I making sense? I can hear it, see it, but not explain it suitably!
Mayber I missed something here but in this direct quote from the article
"The pressure applied during MT may stimulate vagal activity
(Field, 1998, pp. 1273, 1276–1277), which in turn leads to a
reduction of stress hormones and physiological arousal, and a
subsequent parasympathetic response of the ANS (e.g., Ferrell-
Torry & Glick, 1993; Hulme, Waterman, & Hillier, 1999;
Schachner, Field, Hernandez-Reif, Duarte, & Krasnegor, 1998).
By stimulating a parasympathetic response through physiological
means, MT may promote reductions in anxiety, depression, and
pain that are consistent with a state of calmness. This same
mechanism may also be responsible for several condition-specific
benefits resulting from MT, such as increased immune system
response in HIV-positive individuals (Diego et al., 2001), or improved
functioning during a test of mental performance, in which
study participants receiving MT also displayed changes in electroencephalograph
pattern consistent with increased relaxation and
alertness (Field, Ironson, et al., 1996). However, support for this
theory is not universal, and it has even been suggested that MT
may promote a sympathetic response of the ANS (e.g., Barr &
Taslitz, 1970)."
the statement that Mt incereaes the parasympathethetic response is a suggestion.... NOT A CONCLUSION
Hi Mary Ellen.

That quote comes from the section of the 2004 paper in which my colleagues and I are reviewing the current theories for how massage might produce benefits. Later in that same paper we examine some of the evidence that may, or may not, support those theories. One of the things we found is that massage does not reduce cortisol very much at all, which casts serious doubt on the theory summarized by that earlier quote. We go on to say this:

It is interesting to note that, among the theories that are commonly offered to explain MT effects, the most popular theories are the ones least supported by the present results. The failure to find a significant effect for immediate assessment of pain contradicts the theory that MT provides stimuli that interfere with pain consistent with gate control
theory. Reductions in blood pressure and heart rate resulting from MT do support the theory that MT promotes a parasympathetic response, although, if this theory is true, it would also be expected that a significant reduction in cortisol levels would have occurred, which did not."

Since 2004 my colleagues and I have reviewed other evidence and our findings are consistent - massage has little to no effect on cortisol levels.

Does that clarify?

-CM

Mary Ellen Derwis-Balaz said:
Mayber I missed something here but in this direct quote from the article
"The pressure applied during MT may stimulate vagal activity
(Field, 1998, pp. 1273, 1276–1277), which in turn leads to a
reduction of stress hormones and physiological arousal, and a
subsequent parasympathetic response of the ANS (e.g., Ferrell-
Torry & Glick, 1993; Hulme, Waterman, & Hillier, 1999;
Schachner, Field, Hernandez-Reif, Duarte, & Krasnegor, 1998).
By stimulating a parasympathetic response through physiological
means, MT may promote reductions in anxiety, depression, and
pain that are consistent with a state of calmness. This same
mechanism may also be responsible for several condition-specific
benefits resulting from MT, such as increased immune system
response in HIV-positive individuals (Diego et al., 2001), or improved
functioning during a test of mental performance, in which
study participants receiving MT also displayed changes in electroencephalograph
pattern consistent with increased relaxation and
alertness (Field, Ironson, et al., 1996). However, support for this
theory is not universal, and it has even been suggested that MT
may promote a sympathetic response of the ANS (e.g., Barr &
Taslitz, 1970)."
the statement that Mt incereaes the parasympathethetic response is a suggestion.... NOT A CONCLUSION

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