Originally published in Body Sense magazine, Spring/Summer 2004.
Copyright 2004. Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. All rights reserved.
A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine
found that massage, as well as chiropractic work, offered equally beneficial results for low back pain as physical therapy and pain medication. By reviewing the results from three separate studies, researchers were also able to conclude that massage and spinal manipulation relieved pain better than acupuncture, other nondrug relaxation techniques, and a fake laser procedure.
One interpretation of the findings by osteopath James N. Weinstein in Health News suggests that people tend to prefer massage and spinal manipulation to more traditional methods of addressing back pain because of the hands-on time massage practitioners and chiropractors have with their clientele.
If you choose to follow these alternative health paths for low back pain, remember that massage may be contraindicated if you have osteoporosis or a ruptured disc.