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The Effectiveness of Therapeutic Massage On Chronic Nonspecific Low Back Pain, Reduced Ability and Health-Related Quality of Life
Introduction: Nonspecific pain occurs in as many as 80-85% of all cases of back pain. There is individual evidence that therapeutic massage is one of the effective physiotherapy procedures that is more effective in reducing pain in the short term than specific exercise, which is not the case in terms of long-term effectiveness. Massage has been defined in studies as the manipulation of soft tissue using the hands, which has the potential to reduce the intensity of pain and accelerate recovery to normal functioning. Methods: We conducted a pilot study using a randomized clinical study (RCT) protocol and examined the short-term effects of performing manual back massage in subjects with nonspecific chronic back pain on reducing pain intensity (VAS), improving health-related quality of life, as assessed by the SF- 36) and disability reduction. Thirty subjects with chronic nonspecific back pain awaiting physiotherapy were randomly asigned into a study group that received a set of ten therapeutic massages and a control group that did not receive any treatment. Results: Based on the statistical analysis of the results, we find that in the study group there was a decrease in pain intensity and improvement in the average results of disability index and health-related quality of life, compared to the control group, where there was even a slight deterioration, but the results were not statistically significant between groups, nor within a single group in the pre- and post testing phase. Conclusions: Further RCT with control of confounding variables are needed.