Massage Therapy: Case Reports

Standard research practices often do not accurately reflect what massage therapists do in the treatment room. This is why it is important that massage therapists use case studies to report on what we do on a daily basis in the treatment room.

By adding to the scholarly conversation researchers and other therapists are able to see on paper why massage is not just a massage. Instead massage therapy is a multi-modal individualized treatment approach that may consist of massage, joint mobilization, relaxation strategies, self care and patient education.

Case Report: Resources

International Journal of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork- Author guidelines.

The Massage Therapy Research Fund (Canada)

Massage Therapy Foundation - Grants (United States)

CARE - Case Report Guidelines

Massage Therapy: Integrating Research and Practice (Dryden & Moyer)

Baskwill, A. (2013). Facilitating Case Studies in Massage Therapy Clinical Education.International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23730397

Munk, N. (2013). Case Reports: A Meaningful Way for Massage Practice to Inform Research and Education. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24000303

Munk, N., Boulanger, K. (2014). Adaptation of the CARE Guidelines for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork Publications: Efforts To Improve the Impact of Case Reports. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25184013

Munk, N., Shue, S., Freeland, E., Ralston, R., Boulanger, K.T. (2016). Identifying Inconsistencies and Reporting Deficits in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (TMB)  Case Reports Authored by TMB Practitioners: a TMB-Adapted CAse REport (CARE) Guidelines Audit Through 2014. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27648108

Porcino, A., & Moraska, A. (2015). Avoiding Common Writing Mistakes That Make Your Editors and Reviewers Cringe. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26668673

Porcino, A. (2016). Not Birds of a Feather: Case Reports, Case Studies, and Single-Subject Research. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27648107


Case Reports: Examples

Allen, L. (2016). Case Study: The Use of Massage Therapy to Relieve Chronic Low-Back Pain.International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27648110

Burns, S. (2015). Concussion Treatment Using Massage Techniques: A Case Study. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26082825

Casciaro, Y. (2016). Massage Therapy Treatment and Outcomes for a Patient with Parkinson’s Disease: A Case Report. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26977216

Crane, P., Ladden, J., Monica, D. (2017). Treatment of axillary web syndrome using instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization and thoracic manipulation for associated thoracic rotation dysfunction: A case report. Physiother Theory Pract.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28854081

Hill, R., Baskwill, A. (2013). Positive effects of massage therapy on a patient with narcolepsy. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22211155

Jayaseelan, D.J., Post, A.A., Mischke, J.J., Sault, J.D. (2017). Joint mobilization in the management of persistent insertional achilles tendinopathy. Int J Sports Phys Ther. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28217424

Lewis, P.A., & Cunningham, J.E. (2016). Dynamic Angular Petrissage as Treatment for Axillary Web Syndrome Occurring after Surgery for Breast Cancer: A Case Report. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27257446

Manella, C., Backus, D. (2011). Gait characteristics, range of motion, and spasticity changes in response to massage in a person with incomplete spinal cord injury: case report. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. (OPEN ACCESS).
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21589693

Porr, J., Chrobak, K., Muir, B. (2013). Entrapment of the saphenous nerve at the adductor canal affecting the infrapatellar branch - a report on two cases. J Can Chiropr Assoc. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24302782

Resnick, P.B. (2016). Comparing the Effects of Rest and Massage on Return to Homeostasis Following Submaximal Aerobic Exercise: a Case Study. International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork: Research, Education, & Practice. (OPEN ACCESS)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26977215

Wong, Y., Smith, R., & Koppenhaver, S. (2015). Soft Tissue Mobilization to Resolve Chronic Pain and Dysfunction Associated With Post-Operative Abdominal and Pelvic Adhesions: A Case Report. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26471853