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Tactile Massage combined with Conversation about Coping with Stress in Fibromyalgia Syndrome Patients
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Science and Engineering, School of Natural Sciences.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) is a disorder with more or less constant widespread pain of different characters all over the body. Other common symptoms are disturbance of sleep, fatigue, anxiety, depressed mood and concentration problems. The disorder is known to develop after some kind of long lasting physical or emotional stress. The pain comes from the muscles, but many studies of FMS patients have demonstrated that the perceived pain may be of central origin, caused by supraspinal neuroendocrine disturbances in both the sympathetic nervous system and the HPA- (hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal) axis. The past years it has therefore been questioned whether or not FMS is a stress related disorder.

Sensory stimulation seems to activate the pain control system and the parasympathetic nervous system, which in that way may reduce stress and possibly also the level of pain. In the current study, tactile massage was combined with conversation about how to cope with stress as an attempt to reach synergistic treatment effects in FMS.

The aim of this 12 weeks study was to investigate whether or not tactile massage and conversation about coping with stress had any positive effects on five FMS patients´ breathing, pulse rate and blood pressure. The aim was also to investigate if there were changes in the levels of beta-endorphin and oxytocin in plasma as well as to estimate the quality of sleep, levels of energy, stress, pain and quality of life.                                                                 

The method was a single-case research design, where the five participants were their own controls. Each meeting started with 30 minutes conversation and continued with 60 minutes massage of the whole body.                                                                                                     

The results showed significantly decreased breathing rate, pulse rate and blood pressure. There was a tendency towards positive effects on the levels of beta-endorphin in plasma and significant positive effects on the levels of oxytocin. All the participants showed a significant increased quality of sleep, decreased level of stress and pain. The level of energy increased for four participants, but decreased for one participant. The participants estimated three of seven variables (in quality of life) to be higher after the intervention: social life, hobbies and intellectual development. They also made several changes in their life style to feel better. At a first glance, it seemed as the tactile massage could decrease the stress systems. Seen in a longer perspective, it probably was the synergistic effects of the combined treatments with the benefit also of the conversations as well as the changes the participants were able to make in their daily living, that made the results so positive.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011.
Keywords [en]
fibromyalgia syndrome, tactile massage, stress
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-12680OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-12680DiVA, id: diva2:424120
Subject / course
Biomedicine
Uppsok
Medicine
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2011-06-17 Created: 2011-06-17 Last updated: 2011-06-17Bibliographically approved

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  • apa
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