The Effects of Thai Massage on Comfort and Symptoms among Female Cancer Patients Receiving Chemotherapy

Document Type : Original Article



Background: Chemotherapy is the most common modality for cancer management, but it is associated with many side effects. Objectives: This study evaluated the effects of Thai massage on comfort and symptoms among female cancer patients receiving chemotherapy. Methods: This randomized clinical trial was conducted in 2017–2018 with a two‑group pre‑posttest design. Participants were sixty female patients with cancer selected from Bu‑Ali Hospital in Tehran, Iran, and randomly allocated to a control and an intervention group. Participants in the control group received routine care, while their counterparts in the intervention group received both routine care and ten‑session massage therapy. A demographic questionnaire, the Kolcaba’s General Comfort Questionnaire, and the Edmonton Symptom Assessment Scale were used for data collection. Data were analyzed using the Chi‑square, Fisher’s exact, independent‑samples t, and paired‑samples t‑tests. Results: There was no statistically significant difference between the groups respecting the pretest mean scores of comfort and symptoms (P > 0.05). After the intervention, the mean score of comfort in the control group was statistically significantly greater than the intervention group (137.4 ± 6.8 vs. 131.53 ± 9.61; P = 0.008). Moreover, the posttest mean scores of pain, fatigue, nausea, depression, anxiety, and drowsiness in the intervention group were significantly less than the control group (P < 0.05). Conclusion: Massage therapy is effective in significantly reducing symptoms among female cancer patients receiving chemotherapy