There’s been more than one study suggesting massage therapy helps relieve the pain associated with osteoarthritis of the knee. More recently, the results have again been affirmed by research supported by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. The study provides evidence for the benefits of massage therapy for those with musculoskeletal injuries and potentially for those with inflammatory disease, according to the lead author of the research. The study found evidence at the cellular level that massage therapy may affect inflammation in a way similar to anti-inflammatory medications.
As the population ages, studies suggest the incidence of osteoarthritis will increase by 40 percent by 2025. Further, research has shown that conventional therapies are limited in effectiveness and toxicities associated with some drugs limit use, leaving surgery one of the main ways the symptoms of osteoarthritis are relieved. This recent research, combined with a 2006 study that also showed massage therapy was effective in reducing pain associated with osteoarthritis, provides evidence that people with this condition might benefit from weekly, 60-minute massage therapy sessions.
-from the American Massage Therapy Association