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Clinical Trial Summary

Subjects over age 50 with no previous resistance training sessions will be recruited at a subacute rehabilitation and long term care facility. Subjects will be asked to perform a series of eccentric upper arm curl exercises under physician supervision in order to induce muscle soreness. Afterwards, topical oil containing a 2% dilution of either eucalyptus or peppermint oil in fractionated coconut oil will be applied to the flexor surface of the proximal non-dominent arm, and plain fractionated coconut oil to the other arm. This will be repeated at 8 hours and 24 hours after exercise. Subjects will be asked to report their perceived level of muscle soreness using a visual analog scale survey 24, 48, and 72 hours after exercise.


Clinical Trial Description

Subjects 50 years old and above with no previous resistance training sessions within the past year will be recruited at a subacute rehabilitation and long-term care facility. A verbal explanation will be provided to the potential subjects by investigators on-site at the facility, including the fact that their care at the facility will not be affected by their decision to participate or not, and if they are interested in proceeding they will be asked to complete a survey regarding the subject's demographics (gender, age, hand dominance) and medical history, ensure there are no hypersensitivities to the oils being used, upper extremity injuries within 1 year, and that they have the functional capacity for exercise of 3.5METs or greater based on the Duke Activity Status Index. If participants pass the screening process they will again be informed of the study and all potential risks/benefits prior to signing an informed consent. Eucalyptus globulus and Mentha x piperita essential oils will be obtained commercially from SunRose Aromatics (Morrill, Maine), and, individually, will be mixed with carrier oil for application. SunRose Aromatics is a recommended supplier from the RJ Buckle Clinical Aromatherapy for Health Professionals course. Fractionated coconut oil will be used as the carrier oil and also obtained from SunRose Aromatics. A 2% oil mixture for topical application will be made with essential oils diluted in fractionated coconut oil per guidelines from the RJ Buckle Clinical Aromatherapy for Health Professionals course recommendations. This mixture will be prepared directly before application of oils. The unmixed oils will be stored in a private room with no windows at room temperature at the Manor Health and Rehabilitation facility (689 W Main St, Freehold, NJ 07728). Participants will be divided randomly into the Mentha x piperita or the Eucalyptus globulus group. A 2% oil mixture for topical application will be made with essential oils from SunRise Aromatics diluted in fractionated coconut oil per guidelines from the RJ Buckle Clinical Aromatherapy for Health Professionals course recommendations. Physician-supervised eccentric exercise of the elbow flexors will be performed based on an adaptation of the method described by Weber. Free weight dumbbells will provide resistance. The subject will be instructed to prolong the extension aspect of the curl to be five seconds long. They will repeat this motion for 10 or more repetitions until exhaustion, either due to the participant feeling they can no longer tolerate the five second eccentric aspect of the exercise or the investigator identifying that their form has faltered. If subjects reach exhaustion after the 10 repetitions minimum, they will rest for 1 minute. If they are unable to complete 10 repetitions at this weight, the resistance will be decreased to the next lowest weight and they will continue until exhaustion. This will continue until subjects reach exhaustion with the lowest resistance weight. Immediately following exercise, the participants will have the respective oil applied topically to their left upper extremity by the investigator. Their right upper extremity will serve as the control and no essential oil will be applied. Investigators will apply the oil without any use of massage technique and to only apply very superficial pressure. This application will be repeated 8 hours after exercise, when DOMS has been known to initiate, and at 24 hours after exercise, when DOMS may begin to peak. Subject outcomes will be based on a self-reported visual analog scale, which has previously been shown to have validity in subjectively quantifying perceived muscle soreness and used in prior studies. These outcomes will be recorded by investigators for both the intervention and control upper extremity at 24, 48, and 72 hours post-exercise. ;


Study Design


Related Conditions & MeSH terms


NCT number NCT04866407
Study type Interventional
Source Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Contact Sydney Asselstine, MD
Phone 7322942540
Email [email protected]
Status Recruiting
Phase N/A
Start date April 26, 2021
Completion date December 2021

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