IDDF2018-ABS-0130 Thai traditional massage for defecation stimulation in bedridden patients

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Constipation is one of the most common uncomfortable conditions for bedridden patients. While conventional oral or rectal medications usually come with side effects, Thai traditional medicine presumed that constipation represents an imbalance of ‘elements’ and. This study aimed to share experience in using Thai traditional massage to stimulate defecation in bedridden patients.


This retrospective study reviewed the medical records of the bedridden patients with constipation who underwent Royal Thai traditional massage, using standard 4 week in protocol. In the first 3 days of each week, a series of light massage (Basic Massage Line), 4-quadrant acupressure (Major Signal Points), and pressing over umbilicus are used in order to stimulate the bowel movement for 90 min. Then a 30 min circular massage is done in the following 2 days. Defecation onset and frequency, patient compliance and comfort, as well as patient demographics were analysed and presented. Paired Student t-test was used to compare the number of interval days before and after the Thai traditional massage intervention. (Thai Clinical Trials Registry No. TCTR20170811005).


Twenty-three patients were included in this study; mean age 62 years, female 69.56%, hypertension 91.30%, diabetes mellitus 65.21%, and both hypertension and diabetes mellitus 56.52%. The distribution of Life Elements were Earth (Din) 34.78%, Water (Nahm) 30.43%, Wind (Lohm) 21.74%, and Fire (Fire) 13.04%. The patients had defecated at the interval of 8.217 days (SD 2.555) with the use of oral or rectal medication before participating in the study. The interval significantly reduced to 2.826 days (SD 0.995) after the Thai traditional massage protocol without a need for oral or rectal medications (p<0.05). No side effects were observed.


Thai traditional massage could safely help to stimulate defecation in bedridden patients.

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