Massage is the systematic manipulation of the soft tissues of the body, particularly the muscles, tendons and skin. Massage, through touch, is one way that nurses communicate with patients. Touch is the earliest and most primitive communication tool known to human beings. Through touch, nurses can communicate an attitude of caring to patients (Barnett, 1972 and McCorkle, 1974). Massage has become an important therapy in nursing and physiotherapy. This chapter will focus on Swedish massage, which is the simplest form of massage, and is easily learned by nurses and families. There are extensive courses in massage and a wide variety of massage therapies. Those readers interested in developing skills in other areas of massage are encouraged to investigate the many courses available.

Contents include

  • a brief history of massage
  • description
  • massage strokes
  • indications for massage
  • research base
  • education and regulation
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Author / Editor Biographies

RN, MN, GradDip (Nursing Education), GradCert (Oncology Nursing), FCN (NSW) and FRCNA.
Angela Lomasney has been practicing in cancer nursing for 13 years. Her interest in massage stemmed from her work in palliative care at the Royal Marsden Hospital, London. She completed a course in therapeutic massage on her return to Australia. Angela has presented on the topic of foot massage at local and international meetings. Present interests include aromatherapy and therapeutic touch.
RN, GradDip (Nursing Education), MN, GradCert (Oncology Nursing), FCN (NSW) and FRCNA.
Laurie Grealish worked in cancer nursing for many years as a clinician, manager, and academic. She is active in the Cancer Nurses Society of Australia and is a member of the Board of the International Society?of Nurses in Cancer Care. Laurie's interests include patient-centered nursing approaches and how nurses demonstrate caring.

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