Inflammation and Pain Relief Occur with Massage Therapy


About 18¬† million Americans have a therapeutic massage every year. This makes it the fifth most commonly used alternative medicine treatment behind such others as Scottsdale chiropractor treatment. There have been several research studies showing massage’s therapeutic benefits for both short and long-term back and neck pain.

Most people who participate in sports have enjoyed a therapeutic massage to assist with pain relief and muscle recovery. It can recuperate aching, tired muscles so they don’t hurt so dramatically the next days. There is now scientific proof showing that massage works on a cellular level.

A new study out of McMaster University  Ontario was published recently in Science and Translational Medicine. The research showed that massage therapies were able to promote mitochondrial growth in skeletal muscle and dropped inflammation substantially.

The study was quite in-depth and included 11 volunteers undergoing muscle biopsies of their quadriceps (ouch). The men exercised on a stationary bike until they were exhausted and then had a leg massage. The actual leg massaged was chosen randomly. Biopsies were done before exercising and then ten minutes after the massage and then 2 1/2 hours later again (three biopsies = ouch again).

The muscle biopsy was looked at on a cellular level and showed that there was heightened mitochondrial growth and the samples showed decreased numbers of inflammatory cytokines and protein molecules. The researcher’s conclusion was that massage therapy led to pain relief and that it could have similar effect as anti-inflammatory medications in how it worked.

This project actually involved scientific evidence showing how massage works besides just subjectively. There has been a large push by insurance companies to lean on evidence-based medicine when deciding on coverage. There has already been significant research showing chiropractic treatment health benefits for Arizona pain management.

Because of this research, insurance companies are mostly covering chiropractic treatments in the US. So a study like this which shows a cellular and biologically beneficial effect of massage will hopefully help add to the level of evidence based medicine and push insurance companies into coverage.

If you are in pain and looking for help, Preferred Pain Center can help. The Arizona pain clinic offers pain management, chiropractic, Phoenix physical therapy, and massage and acupuncture. Call (602) 507-6550 Today!