Background: Chronic pain is one of the most frequent physical symptoms worldwide and requires intervention on many levels. Complementary therapies in particular are becoming increasingly relevant and popular in the treatment of chronic pain. The present study evaluates the therapeutic effects of rhythmic embrocation with a lavender/peat extract [Solum Oil (German: Solum Ol)].
Materials and methods: In a prospective observational study 100 patients with chronic pain were treated three times (T1-T3) within 24 days by rhythmic embrocation with Solum Oil. Main active constituents per 10 g of Solum Oil: aqueous peat extract (1:5) 1.96 g, and Lavandulae aetheroleum 0.5 g. The Mood Scale (Bf-S) and Pain Perception Scale (sensory PPS, affective PPS) were measured before the first and after each of the 3 treatments. To measure the therapeutic effects, effect sizes were calculated.
Results: Patients were mainly female (89%), mean duration of chronic pain (low back pain): 8.8 years; 1 drop-out due to urticaria. Bf-S was reduced from 25.8 [95% confidence interval (CI); 22.8-28.1] before T1 to 13.3 (95% CI; 11.7-15.0) after T3; sensory PPS from 18.8 (95% CI; 17.7-19.8) to 15.2 (95% CI; 14.1-16.4), affective PPS from 29.8 (95% CI; 27.9-31.7) to 21.3 (95% CI; 19.4-23.0) (all P<0.01). Effect sizes (d): Bf-S: d=0.81; affective PPs: d=0.85; sensory PPS: d=0.55.
Conclusions: The high effect sizes indicate that repeated rhythmic embrocation with Solum Oil may improve mood, pain perception (sensory PPS), and the ability to cope with pain (affective PPS) in patients with chronic low back pain. To further assess the efficacy of this method, a randomized clinical trial is recommended.