Effects of Massage on Weight Gain and Jaundice in Term Neonates with Hyperbilirubinemia

Moghadam, Mehdi Basiri; Moghadam, Kokab Basiri; Kianmehr, Mojtaba; Jomezadeh, Alieh; Davoudi, Farideh
June 2012
Journal of Isfahan Medical School;6/4/2012, Vol. 30 Issue 183, p1
Academic Journal
Background: Massage therapy is known as one of the complementary treatments. The present research was performed with the aim of studying the effects of 5 days of massage on weight gain and serum bilirubin levels in term infants with hyperbilirubinemia. Methods: This clinical trial research was carried out on 34 full-term infants with hyperbilirubinemia at a hospital in Gonabad, Iran. The infants weighted between 2500-4000 g at birth and had bilirubin levels of 13-24 mg/dl. The 34 infants hospitalized with hyperbilirubinemia were randomly assigned into a massage group comprising of 18 babies and a control group of 16 babies. A total of 25 infants completed the study. The intervention consisted of massage and passive movements carried out on the infants of the massage group in three 15-minute periods at the beginning of three consecutive hours, daily for 5 days. The mean bilirubin levels were monitored and compared with those of the control group. Data was analyzed in SPSS14 using independent t-test and Fisher's exact test. Findings: During the 5 days of intervention, the mean of daily weight gain among the infants was 28.8 g in the massage group and 15.83 g in the control group. The difference between the two groups was not statistically significant (P = 0.14). Bilirubin levels at the beginning of the study were 17.89 ± 2.12 mg/dl in the massage group and 17.87 ± 2.46 mg/dl in the control group (P = 0.98). However, the mean bilirubin levels on the 4th day of hospitalization showed a significant difference between the massage and control groups (9.92 ± 1.3 mg/dl vs. 11.97 ± 1.52 mg/dl; P = 0.001). Conclusion: This study showed that 5 days of massage therapy cannot cause significant differences in weight gain. However, massage had a significant effect in decreasing the bilirubin level of infants suffering from hyperbilirubinemia undergoing phototherapy treatment.


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