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Court Type Thai Traditional Massage (CTTM) or Nuad Thai Raja Sum Nak is an effective treatment
for musculoskeletal disorders that are commonplace in Thai infirmaries and has specific major lines or points
for massage with deep compression and rhythmic gentle pressing. The aims of this study were to compare
surface landmarks and anatomical structures of the trunk in major basic massage lines (BLs), massage points
(MPs) and signaling point (SPs) between healthy volunteers and cadavers by percussion, auscultation,
bimanual palpation and dissection including measuring the applied pressure force by acupressure test in
healthy volunteers. In healthy volunteers, percussion or auscultation in lines and points of abdominal region
demonstrated a bowel sound, whereas for the back region a dull sound was demonstrated. Palpation indicated
there were muscles in both abdominal and back regions in all lines and points of CTTM. Dissection of
cadavers revealed the anatomical structures in the abdomen beneath major locations were mainly organs of
the gastrointestinal (GI) system with their associated small vessels and the large vessels. For the back area,
BLs and SPs are verified to be mostly muscular structures with their associated vessels and nerve branches.
The BLs of the shoulder correspond to the fleshy part of the upper trapezius muscle with related underlying
vessels and nerves. The averages of the commonly applied fingerûs pressure massage on abdominal, back and
shoulder areas were 5.32 ± 1.28 kg, 11.6 ± 1.45 kg and 8.5 ± 0.36 kg, respectively. The trunk MPs, BLs and
SPs used in CTTM are associated with or closely correlated to important anatomical structures, especially GI
tract organs, blood vessels, nerves and paravertebral muscles. The results of this study are important for
clinical practice and could lead to effective treatment with patient safety.
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