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[Fr. masser, to massage]
1. Manipulation, rhythmic pressure, friction, and/or kneading of soft tissues (skin, muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia) with the hands, forearms, elbows, knees, or feet.
Vigorous massage should be avoided by patients taking anticoagulant drugs or patients with low platelet counts: in these patients, massage may cause bleeding or bruising. Massage should also be avoided over known tumors, blood clots, or prosthetic body parts.
2. The therapeutic application of touch by a licensed massage practitioner. Massage may aid in the treatment of anxiety, arthritis, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, depression, fibromyalgia, musculoskeletal pain, premenstrual syndrome, sports injuries, and stress.