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Critically Reviewed

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The purpose of part A of this assignment is to choose a research article to be critically reviewed. This is to be achieved by reviewing and comparing the abstracts of two research articles written by Castro-Sanchez et al (2011) and Matsumoto et al (2011).


Castro-Sanchez (2011) ran a randomised controlled clinical trial on a group of seventy four fibromyalgia patients to determine if massage-myofascial release therapy would improve pain, anxiety, quality of sleep, depression and quality of life in these patients. These patients were divided into two groups with one receiving the massage whilst the other received a placebo treatment over a twenty week period. The outcome of this trial showed that myofascial release therapy improved pain and quality of life in fibromyalgia patients.

Matsumoto et al (2011) ran a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial on a group of 200 healthcare workers from three healthcare facilities for the elderly in Japan. The aim of the trial was to determine if green tea catechins and theanine are effective in preventing influenza infection. The healthcare workers were divided into two equal groups with one receiving catechin/theanine capsules and the other receiving a placebo. The outcome of this trial indicated that taking green tea catechins and theanine may be helpful among healthcare workers for the elderly.


Whilst both researchers ran a randomised controlled clinical trial, Matsumoto et al (2011) specifies that theirs was double-blinded, which gives protection from bias (Portney & Watkins 2009, pg 170). Both these trials are examples of quantative and experimental research (Portney & Watkins, 2009 pgs 19&22). Matsumoto (2011) presented their abstract clearly and informatively with a defined structure, whilst Castro-Sanchez (2011) abstract was written in paragraph form making it harder to locate the various sections. Castro-Sanchez (2011) made no mention of previous studies done in this area, whereas Matsumoto (2011) specified previous experimental studies which had been inconclusive. Matsumoto (2011) used a large cohort of people from a specific area and specified where and how the data was measured and collected, and at what time of the year the trial was conducted. In comparison Castro-Sanchez (2011) used a relatively smaller cohort of people with no mention from where they came or where the trial was run and at what time of the year. Also they made no mention of how or where the data was collected or what measuring tools were used. Matsumoto (2011) gave more detailed information in their outcome measures and results, albeit more technical. Castro-Sanchez (2011) gave a definite conclusion to their results whilst Matsumoto (2011) was more ambiguous.





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