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Orthop Nurs. 2010 Jul-Aug;29(4):254-7; quiz 258-9. doi: 10.1097/NOR.0b013e3181e517c6.

Massage therapy for stress management: implications for nursing practice.

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  • 1Miami Valley Hospital, Dayton, OH, USA.


Unresolved stress has been shown to have numerous adverse effects on the body. A review of the literature has revealed 2 major themes: (1) research that argues that massage has a direct relationship with positive health outcomes and (2) research that stresses that although there are little or no measurable physiological changes that occur from massage, patients' perceptions of stress and anxiety were significantly reduced. The simple act of touch-focused care, even a simple 5-min hand or foot massage, can be useful in lowering a patient's perceived level of stress. Further research is necessary on the benefits and risks of implementing massage therapy in the hospital setting.

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