Background and purpose: Congenital muscular torticollis (CMT) is a musculoskeletal condition occurring in infants and children. This systematic review is conducted to summarize the current evidence on the effects and safety of TCM massage therapy for the treatment of CMT in infants and children. Methods: We searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and quasi-RCTs on TCM massage for CMT in PubMed, Embase, CENTRAL, CINAHL, AMED, PsycINFO, Ovid MEDLINE, TCMLARS, ICTRP, CSTJ, CNKI, Wanfang Data, CBM, Taiwan Electronic Periodical Services, and the Index to Taiwan Periodical Literature System. Two reviewers conducted the data collection and analysis separately. Cochrane's collaboration tool was used to assess the risk of bias, and GRADEpro was used to assess the overall quality of the evidence. RevMan 5.3 software was used for data analysis with a random-effect model. Results: A systematic review of six RCTs and one quasi-RCT was conducted with a meta-analysis of two of the RCTs. Pooled analysis showed that TCM massage has similar effects to those of stretching therapy on CMT symptoms in terms of effective rate (risk ratio: 1.00, 95% CI: 0.94–1.06; I2 = 0%; P = 0.99). Conclusion: Evidence suggests that TCM massage therapy is beneficial for treating CMT in infants and children. Further clinical trials with high-quality methodologies need to be conducted.
- Complementary therapy
- Congenital muscular torticollis (CMT)
- Systematic review
- Traditional Chinese medicine
- Traditional Chinese medicine massage
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Complementary and alternative medicine