Asian Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Asian Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine

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Impact of massage therapy on post-operative outcomes after cardiac surgery: Narrative review

Ramesh C1, Nitin Patil2 , Vasudev Pai3, Baby S Nayak4*, Anice George4, Linu Sara George4, Elsa Sanatombi Devi4.

1-PhD Scholar , Manipal College of Nursing, Manipal University, Manipal
2-Assistant Professor, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Manipal.
3-Associate Professor, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Manipal
4-Professor, Manipal College of Nursing, Manipal University, Manipal.


Introduction The incidence of Coronary artery Disease (CAD) has doubled in India over the last 3 decades, whereas CAD rates have dropped by 50% during the same period in most developed countries. Number of percutaneous coronary interventions and coronary artery bypass surgery are increasing steadily every year in India due to higher prevalence of CAD.

Objective The objective of this narrative review is to examine the efficacy of massage therapy on various post-operative outcomes in patients following cardiac surgery

Methods A comprehensive literature search was made in following databases for retrieving the related studies, PubMed- Medline, CINAHL, Science Direct, INDMED and Google Scholar. In the included studies, data were extracted and evaluated according to the objective and narrative analysis were adopted to write this review.

Results Out of total seven reviewed studies, 6 studies have concluded that use of massage therapy is beneficial after cardiac surgery. Only one study reported that massage is feasible in this patient population, but does not yield any therapeutic benefits. Use of massage therapy has a positive impact on post-operative outcomes among patients following cardiac surgery. None of the studies reviewed reported any harmful effects of massage therapy.

Conclusion Massage therapy has demonstrated to decrease the perceived symptom of anxiety, fatigue, pain and tension among patients receiving postoperative care after the cardiac surgery. There is a necessity for further strong methodological qualities of randomized controlled trials to prove its efficiency and add more scientific evidence on massage therapy in this field.


Massage therapy, Postoperative outcomes, Cardiac surgery, Narrative review

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