Craniosacral Research Blog
Craniosacral Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Neck Pain A Randomized Sham-controlled Trial
A 2012-2013 randomized controlled clinical trial with a parallel-group design and 3 months of follow-up observation of 54 blinded patients were randomized into either 8 weekly units of CST or light-touch sham treatment to assess the effectiveness of craniosacral therapy in treating chronic neck pain. Findings: “CST was shown to be specifically effective and safe in reducing neck pain intensity and may improve the functional disability and the quality of life up to 3 months after the intervention. Particularly in chronic and recurrent neck pain, CST may be a worthwhile treatment option in addition to standard medical care. Further studies with rigorous methodological designs and long-term follow ups are needed to confirm CST efficacy in neck pain treatment.”
Research: Heidemarie Haller, Romy Lauche, w Holger Cramer, Thomas Rampp, Felix J. Saha, Thomas Ostermann, z and Gustav Dobos. “Craniosacral Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Neck Pain A Randomized Sham-controlled Trial.” Clin J Pain 32.5 (2016): 441-449.
The comparison of the therapeutic massage with the craniosacral method in treating the pain syndrome of the cranial part of the spine
A 2013-2014 randomized trial with two groups of twenty subjects experiencing cervical pain meant to determine if classical massage, craniosacral therapy and/or the two modalities combined help decrease cervical pain. Findings: “On the basis of conducted research, the following conclusions have been drawn: 1. Classical massage is an effective and valuable method of curing pain ailments of the cervical part of the spine. 2. The craniosacral therapy is an effective, non-invasive method of curing pain ailments of the area of the neck. 3. The craniosacral therapy, with its only 100 years of history, can be used equally well together with the classical massage known and valued for thousands of years to cure pain ailments of the neck. The patients evaluated the applied method positively. They felt better and the pain ailments were lesser. The other group – the research one – the improvement of health was greater. The fact suggests a more effective influence of the cranial-sacral therapy than the classical massage in case of pain ailments of the cervical part of the spine.”
Research: Miszewski Waldemar, Miszewska Agnieszka, Śniegocki Maciej, Siedlecki Zygmunt, Grzyb Sebastian, Siminska Joanna, Pietkun Katarzyna, Głowacka Iwona, Nowacka Krystyna, Hagner Wojciech. The comparison of the therapeutic massage with the craniosacral method in treating the pain syndrome of the cranial part of the spine. Journal of Education, Health and Sport. 2016;6(4):249-270.
Pathophysiology of Energy Medicine with Special Reference to Craniosacral Interventions
A 2006-2007 study with 30 participants, 27 adults and 3 children between the ages of 8 and 14. “The patients presented with pain [(26) 86.7 % ]; depression [(2) 6%]; anxiety [(1) 3.3 % ] and depression +anxiety in [(1) 3.3 % ]. There was complete recovery in 10 (33.3%) cases; 75 % recovery in 7 cases (23.5%) and recovery between 50 to 75 % in 11 cases (36.6% ). 1 patient (3.3 %) showed recovery less than 50 % and 1 patient did not show any improvement. It was concluded that craniosacral therapy reduces the pain and is helpful in anxiety and depression.”
Research: Singh M, Ahluwalia C. “Pathophysiology of Energy Medicine with Special Reference to Craniosacral Interventions.” Delhi Business Review, 2015 16(1),109-118.
Effectiveness of Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy on Emerging Adults with Autism
A 2015 study with participants between the ages of 17 and 25 that “aimed to assess the effectiveness of biodynamic craniosacral therapy as an adjunctive method for emerging adults with autism…. The group was administered 30 therapeutic sessions on a regular interval of time. The study uses a pre-test, mid- evaluation and post-test design to understand the significant improvement on the overall characteristics and domains such as language, sociability, sensory/cognitive awareness and physical health.
However, the results indicated that there was a significant difference obtained within the group in terms of their improvement from the pretest to posttest in the social skills, speech and cognitive awareness, with no significant improvement in physical behavior. From these findings, it is observed that biodynamic craniosacral therapy has contributed towards the improvement of the autism characteristics of the sample to a significant degree. The study tried to explain the possible reasons for the present findings and suggested what could be incorporated for the effectiveness of the self-healing body mechanism.”
Research: PriyankaM B. “Effectiveness of Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy on Emerging Adults with Autism.” International Journal of Physical and Social Sciences, 2015 5(7),68-80; Published online 30 December 2015.
Effectiveness of Combined approach of Craniosacral Therapy (CST) and Sensory-Integration Therapy (SIT) on reducing features in Children with Autism
A 2012 study evaluating the increased effectiveness of Sensory-Integration Therapy (SIT) when used in conjunction with Craniosacral Therapy (CST). Twenty autistic children participated in this study over the span of 6 months. Findings report: “it is clearly evident that there was overall improvement of children occur in both the groups. However the experiment group had shown better improvement as compared to control group. This difference in the result may be due to application of CST in experiment group.”
Research: Mishra DP, Senapati A. “Effectiveness of Combined approach of CraniosacralTherapy (CST) and Sensory-Integration Therapy (SIT) on reducing features in Children with Autism” The Indian Journal of Occupational Therapy 2015 Jan-April;47(1):3-8.
Craniosacral Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Neck Pain: A Randomized Sham-controlled Trial.
A 2015 randomized sham-controlled trial with 54 blinded patients experiencing chronic neck pain. Findings suggest: “Significant differences at week 8 and 20 were also found for pain on movement, functional disability, physical quality of life and patients’ global improvement. Pressure pain sensitivity and body awareness were significantly improved only at week 8; anxiety only at week 20. No serious adverse events were reported…. CST was both specifically effective and safe in reducing neck pain intensity and may improve functional disability and quality of life up to 3 months post intervention.”
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Research: Haller H, Cramer H, Lauche R, Rampp T, Saha F, Ostermann T, Dobos G. “Craniosacral Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Neck Pain: A Randomized Sham-controlled Trial.” Clinical Journal of Pain 2015 September; Online ahead of print.
Patients’ experiences of Craniosacral Therapy in the treatment of chronic neck pain: a qualitative analysis of health outcomes
A 2015 randomized controlled trial with 19 patients experiencing chronic non-specific neck pain. Findings suggest: “Most patients described positive changes in more than one of the following domains: physical (less intensity of pain, headache and dizziness, improved sleep and range of motion), perceptional (more upright and symmetrical posture, sustained deep relaxation), emotional (pain is less threatening, increased calm, confidence and hope), cognitive (increased body awareness and self-efficacy, extinction of pain memory, increased concentration and less mind cinema), spiritual (sense of basic trust and peace), behavioral (moving in action alternatives, actively avoid stress, sport is again possible), social (more social contacts and activities) and economic domain (less pain medication, improved work efficiency). Several patients reported initial aggravation of symptoms, but no persisting or serious adverse events.”
Research: Haller H, Cramer H, Lauche R, Dobos G, Berger B. “Patients’ experiences of Craniosacral Therapy in the treatment of chronic neck pain: a qualitative analysis of health outcomes.” ICCMR 2015 Poster Presentation Abstracts 2015 April; P2.034.
Perspectives on the effects and mechanisms of craniosacral therapy: A qualitative study of users’ views
A 2015 qualitative study of 29, self selected participants’ experiences with craniosacral therapy through semi-structured interviews. The aim of the study includes effectiveness of craniosacral therapy through the expectations and perceptions of the participants. Conclusion determines that “all participants in this study observed positive changes in their health status and most attributed these to CST.”
Research: Nicola Brough, Antje Lindenmeyer, Jill Thistlethwaite, George Lewith, Sarah Stewart-Brown. Perspectives on the effects and mechanisms of craniosacral therapy: A qualitative study of users’ views. European Journal of Integrative Medicine 2015; 7(2):172–183.
The cranial rhythmic impulse and excessive crying of infancy.
A 2009 study with a final sample of 139 patients aimed to “examine whether an abnormal CRI is associated with excessive crying of infancy.” Results show “Infants with an abnormal CRI at 2 weeks were 6.8 times (95% confidence intervals 2.2, 20.6) more likely to develop excessive crying than infants with a normal CRI.” Conclusions of the study “suggest that an abnormal CRI at 2 weeks of age may be associated with excessive crying.”
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Research: Paul V. Kotzampaltiris, Katherine J. Chou, Stephen P. Wall, and Ellen F. Crain. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. April 2009, Vol. 15, No. 4: 341-345
Utility of Craniosacral Therapy in Treatment of Patients with Non-specific Low Back Pain. Preliminary Report.
A 2014 preliminary report of a study aimed to “examine the utility of craniosacral therapy techniques in the treatment of patients with lumbosacral spine overload and to compare its effectiveness to that of trigger point therapy, which is a recognised therapeutic approach.” The study consisted of 55 participants between the ages of 24 to 47 with low back pain due to overload only. Conclusions of the study: “1. Craniosacral therapy and trigger point therapy may effectively reduce the intensity and frequency of pain in-patients with non-specific low back pain. 2. Craniosacral therapy, unlike trigger point therapy, reduces the resting tension of the multifidus muscle in patients with non-specific lumbosacral pain. . . 3.Craniosacral therapy and trigger point therapy may be clinically effective in the treatment of patients with non-specific lumbosacral spine pain.”
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Research: Dariusz Białoszewski, Marcin Bebelski, Monika Lewandowska, Anna Słupik. Ortop Traumatol Rehabil 2014; 16(6):605-615
Links and Resources
The most comprehensive online platform of craniosacral research to date right now is: http://www.craniosacral.co.uk/research. The intention of this blog is to expand on what this UK craniosacral site has already begun.
If you know of craniosacral research or case studies that are not listed on this blog, please contact us with that information so that we may post it: firstname.lastname@example.org.
These are links to other sites that list research available on craniosacral therapy:
These are online social media groups that share information about craniosacral therapy: