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J Prim Health Care. 2011 Mar 1;3(1):53-7.

Improved motor function with Bowen therapy for rehabilitation in chronic stroke: a pilot study.

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Tairawhiti District Health, Gisborne, New Zealand.



Bowen therapy is an established complementary therapy with anecdotal reports of effectiveness. However, there is limited published research to substantiate safety or effectiveness. This is a pilot study to explore the potential impact of Bowen therapy in chronic stroke.


A case series of 14 people with chronic stroke were offered 13 sessions of Bowen therapy over a three-month period.


Motor assessments of the 13 people who participated showed improvements--gross motor function trended to improvement; SF-36 role-physical, physical health summary scale and total SF-36 scores showed statistically significantly improvements. However, grip strength reduced.


In this pilot study, Bowen therapy was associated with improvements in neuromuscular function in people with chronic stroke. At this stage of study, it is not possible to conclude that there is definite benefit; however the results suggest that exploration through further research is appropriate.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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