Research conducted by the Atlanta School of Massage and Emory University suggests neuromuscular therapy (NMT), which emphasizes soft-tissue manipulation, may improve motor and selected non-motor symptoms in patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD). In the study, thirty-six subjects with PD were assigned to NMT or music relaxation (active control) groups. Treatment was performed twice weekly for four weeks; testing was done at baseline, and eight days after final treatment. NMT was found to lead to “significant and sustained improvement in the motor subscale” of the United Parkinson Disease Rating Scale, and, most notably, the tremor scores. Investigators concluded the “pilot study warrant(s) larger controlled studies to examine dose range, durability, and mechanisms of NMT in PD function.”
Results of the study were published in the December 2006 issue of Movement Disorders.