Introduction Since the introduction of surfactant the survival rate of preterm infants increased significantly. This has brought the expert’s attention to maximizing the growth and development of this fragile population. Many studies demonstrated that massage has some roles in the weight gain of preterm infants. Our aim is to compare the effect of massage therapy among those who were massaged by a nurse or mother or none.
Method Our randomized clinical trial has three groups;
The infants who only received routine care and no massage,
those who received massage by an expert nurse and
and those who received massage by their mothers.
We recorded daily weight gain, the length of stay and fluid intake. We used the Kriskal-wallis test and the SPSS software.
Results The gestational age ranged between 28 to 34 weeks. At the end of the fifth day the group who were massaged by a nurse had significantly more weight gain compared to the other two groups. With 6.5+1.5 for the nurse group, 1+4.6 for the mother group and 1.5+3.7 for the control group, P-value = 0.001. Those who were massaged by their mother had gained significantly more than the control group P-value=0.05. there was no significant difference in the length of hospital stay among groups.
Discussion Our study shows that the five days massage therapy is a safe procedure for stable preterm infants to facilitate their weight gain. Mothers can perform this procedure. However more studies are needed to increase the efficacy of their performance.
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