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  1. Gulbahar Eren, Merve MSc, RN
  2. Gok Metin, Zehra PhD, RN


This randomized controlled study aimed to investigate the effects of classical massage (CM) and Benson relaxation exercise (BRE) on symptom status and quality of life (QoL) in patients with heart failure (HF). Seventy-two patients with HF were recruited from 4 hospitals in Ankara, Turkey. The study sample was allocated to a CM (n = 24), BRE (n = 26), or control group (n = 22) based on the New York Heart Association classification of HF (stages III and IV) through stratified randomization. The intervention groups received either CM or BRE twice daily for 7 days (total of 14 sessions). The control group received only routine care. The scores of symptom status decreased in the CM and BRE groups at the end of the intervention (first week) as compared with the control group (P < .05). Nevertheless, at the end of the monitoring period, no significant differences were detected between the 3 study groups at baseline (P = .474), week 1 (P = .936), and week 3 (P = .668) in terms of QoL scores. The CM and BRE showed beneficial effects in the management of HF symptoms in advanced stage HF patients who were hospitalized and received intensive treatment.