I Just finished my own little study of the effects of massage therapy on Parkinson's Disease. Mind you, it was with only one Client. I gave the client, 4- 30 minute treatments a week over a 3 week period. I applied Myofascial Release, manual lymphatic drainage, and Neuromuscular massage. The client was also instructed on deep diaphramic breathing for relaxation and stretching exercises.
The purpose was to see if there were any changes physically or psychologically.
1. There was no change in the amount of shaking during stress induced events. By the end of the 3 week span, the client did however state he was more conscious of the shaking and could stop it under his own control.
2. At the start, the muscle tone on the right side of the body was ridgid due to the constant shaking. At the end of the 3 week period. The color of the skin became darker and looked healthier, possibly from increased blood supply to the muscle tissue. The muscle tissue became much more supple and relaxed and range of motion in the joints increased slightly. The most visible increase in range of motion was the flexibility in the hands and wrist.
3. The client by the end of the 3 week period talked of feeling more relaxed overall and less mentally stressed.
I think the over-all result is Massage can aid in comforting people with PD. It can greatly increase relaxation in the muscle tissue and may provide some psychological benefits. But it's not a Cure.
Nick Hadl Clinical Bodywork
800 5th avenue suite 150
Fort Worth, TX. 76104