Massage & Bodywork

MARCH | APRIL 2017

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C h e c k o u t A B M P 's l a t e s t n e w s a n d b l o g p o s t s . Av a i l a b l e a t w w w. a b m p . c o m . 49 reported the outcomes. Also, consistency with documentation of outcomes in a potentially busy household should be questioned. The subjective nature of treatments and outcomes in this study may have affected the final results of this study. MASSAGE AND LAVENDER OIL A similar IRB-approved study on colicky infants compared massage using lavender oil with no treatment. 2 Lavender oil used due to its possible sedative, antispasmodic, and anticolic properties. This study included 40 infants with colic between 2 and 6 weeks of age and of normal birth, development, and growth. There were no differences in baseline characteristics between the groups in this study. Treatments were again administered by the mothers of the infants. The mothers randomized to the massage group were trained to do aromatherapy massage at home. They used 1 drop of lavender oil mixed with 20 milliliters of almond oil as the lubricant, which was mixed by the researchers. At the start of a colic attack, the mothers delivered abdominal massage for 5–15 minutes. The infants in the control group did not receive any form of care. A total of five weekly in-house visits were completed by the investigators to measure the level of colic symptoms. In addition, mothers recorded any crying that lasted for more than 15 minutes during each week. In the massage group, the number of hours of crying significantly changed from 13.28 hours per week to 6.27 hours, whereas the number of crying hours did not change in the control group, measured as 13.25 hours per week to 13.37 hours per week. This demonstrated a statistically significant difference between groups, favoring the massage group. Again, as in the previous study, the limitations include the fact that we do not know the specific protocol for the massage intervention, although we do know that massage was specific to the infants' abdomens and that the investigators assessed the massage treatment on a weekly basis. Another limitation similar to the previous study is that the mothers were the ones to record the crying times of their infants, but were unblinded to the treatment group, which might have led to bias in their assessments. Overall, there seems to be a trend in positive outcomes for infantile colic massage, with some significant outcomes in the time of infant crying. This may be a viable option for parents whose infants suffer from colic. However, more studies with fewer limitations are needed before definitive results can be concluded. When treating infants in your practice, be sure to work with the infant's physician to determine if massage would be a safe option. Notes 1. A. Sheidaei et al., "The Effectiveness of Massage Therapy in the Treatment of Infantile Colic Symptoms: A Randomized Controlled Trial," Medical Journal of the Islamic Republic of Iran 30 (April 9, 2016): 351. 2. B. Çetinkaya and Z. Basbakkal, "The Effectiveness of Aromatherapy Massage Using Lavender Oil as a Treatment for Infantile Colic," International Journal of Nursing Practice 18, no. 2 (April 2012): 164–9. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-172X.2012.02015.x. Jerrilyn Cambron, DC, PhD, MPH, LMT, is an educator at the National University of Health Sciences and president of the Massage Therapy Foundation. Contact her at jcambron@nuhs.edu. There seems to be a trend in positive outcomes for infantile colic massage.

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