We investigated the effectiveness and usefulness of a novel tool: the Power Tree?, for body massage in 10 healthy female volunteers (age range, 24 - 55 years; mean age, 40.5 years) by evaluating several dermatological and psychological parameters, such as the amount of dermal collagen, the skin temperature, the level of salivary amylase and the scores on the State-Trait Anxiety Index (STAI). After 60-minute Power Tree?-mediated body massage, both the dermal collagen score determined from the DermaLab? images and skin temperature measured by infrared thermography were found to have increased significantly in several body sites compared to those before the treatment (p < 0.01 and p < 0.001, respectively). Although the level of stress estimated by the amount of amylase in the saliva was not significantly different pre- and post-procedure (p = 0.3), the treatment significantly reduced both the state anxiety (SA) and trait anxiety (TA) scores on the STAI (p < 0.001 for the SA, p < 0.01 for the TA). The treatment with this device was smoothly performed without any burden on the therapists during the present study. These data suggest that the newly-developed device is a powerful and useful tool for reflexology when used for full body massage therapy, and massage therapy using this device may produce beneficial, physiological effects as well as psychosocial improvements.
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