[Note: Myofascial release is hands-on stretching of the fascia that surround and connect the body’s muscles and organs. The idea is to relieve uneven tightness/stress in muscles and the surrounding fascia which may be causing pain and other symptoms. The full text of this article is available free HERE. For more information on fibro and chronic myofascial pain, see Devin Starlanyl's website (http://homepages.sover.net/~devstar).]
Fibromyalgia is a chronic syndrome characterized by generalized pain, joint rigidity, intense fatigue, sleep alterations, headache, spastic colon, craniomandibular dysfunction, anxiety, and depression.
The purpose of the present study was to determine whether massage-myofascial release therapy can improve pain, anxiety, quality of sleep, depression, and quality of life in patients with fibromyalgia.
A randomized controlled clinical trial was performed.
Seventy-four fibromyalgia patients were randomly assigned to experimental (massage-myofascial release therapy) and placebo (sham treatment with disconnected magnotherapy device) groups.
The intervention period was 20 weeks. Pain, anxiety, quality of sleep, depression, and quality of life were determined at baseline, after the last treatment session, and at 1 month and 6 months.
Immediately after treatment and at 1 month, anxiety levels, quality of sleep, pain, and quality of life were improved in the experimental group over the placebo group.
However, at 6 months postintervention, there were only significant differences in the quality of sleep index.
Myofascial release techniques improved pain and quality of life in patients with fibromyalgia.
Source: Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Dec 28, 2010. PMID: 21234327, by Castro-Sánchez AM, Matarán-Peñarrocha GA, Granero-Molina J, Aguilera-Manrique G, Quesada-Rubio JM, Moreno-Lorenzo C. Department of Nursing and Physical Therapy, University of Almería, Almería, Spain.