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Evaluation of Healing by Gentle Touch for the Treatment of Musculoskeletal Disorders

This questionnaire-based study looked at 76 patients with chronic musculoskeletal disorders (back pain, joint pain, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis) who received four gentle touch healing sessions at the Centre for Complementary Care, Cumbria, UK. Sixty-six patients recorded receiving medical treatment at the same time. Visual analog scale scores for all patients for stress, pain, and disability were reduced significantly and ability to cope, relaxation levels, and sleep patterns were improved. There were significant shifts toward less severe problems with mobility, pain, usual activities, and anxiety or depression. No adverse effects were reported. Those patients with the most severe symptoms on entry experienced the greatest improvement.

The relief reported by patients with previously severe, intractable pain suggests that, when used as an adjunct to standard medical treatment, gentle touch healing may reduce the intensity and significance of pain, might provide a useful nonpharmacological alternative for patients who have adverse effects from analgesics or anti-inflammatory drugs, and might support the effects of physiotherapy and compliance with recommended exercise regimens. Weze C, Leathard HL, Stevens G. American Journal of Public Health. 94(1):50-2,2004 Jan.



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