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Scand J Rehabil Med. 1983;15(1):17-20.

Regional muscle tension and pain ("fibrositis"). Effect of massage on myoglobin in plasma.


In thirteen patients, all women, with regional muscle tension and pain ("fibrositis") plasma myoglobin concentration was measured before and after massage. A significant increase was observed in the plasma myoglobin concentration reaching a maximum three hours after the start of massage treatment (median 133 micrograms/l). A positive correlation was found between the degree of muscle tension and the increase in plasma myoglobin concentration. After repeated massage treatment a gradual decline could be demonstrated in the increase of the plasma myoglobin concentration in coincidence with the efficacy of the treatment. Opposed to this only normal levels of myoglobin were found in plasma when muscles without tenderness and pain were treated with massage. The observed increase of myoglobin in plasma after massage indicates a leak of myoglobin from the muscle fibres, which suggests that regional muscle tension and pain is associated with disorders in the muscle fibres.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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