POST-SURGERY REHAB MASSAGE
How Massage Therapy Can Benefit
Post-surgery patients benefit from massage
therapy in many ways such as, reducing contractures, relaxing
muscles which have become tight and are guarding due to the
trauma of the surgery. Massage helps the laying down of collagen
substructures which cause scar tissues around the incision
and surrounding tissues.
There is no set time for the healing of
surgeries (or injuries, for that matter). It all depends on
what the surgery was for, where the incision is, and how large
and deep it is. For something as major like heart surgery,
it would definitely be longer than 6 weeks. For minor surgery,
with smaller incisions, the therapist should just avoid the
area of the incision and massage around the incision, to the
comfort of the client.
Orthopedic Massage (including the deep tissue,
myofascial release, and cross fiber friction modalities),
is a great way to release adhesions. To massage the incision
area (medium incisions- 1 inch to 3 inches), it is good to
wait approximately for 6 weeks. If the scar has fully formed,
the therapist should try light pressure around the site. There
should be strong communication between the client and the
therapist. The Therapist needs to stop at any discomfort,
and slowly increase the depth if it is comfortable. If the
Therapist is ever unsure, it is always recommended to get
the doctor's perspective first.
There is always increased swelling, reduced
flexibility and stiffness following surgery. The incision
site and the underlying adhesions to muscle tissue and fascia
because of tension, displacement, and cutting/suturing create
scar tissue. It is vital that that incision site and joints
be massaged after seven days of healing.
Of course, pressure and intensity of massage needs to be light
at first and then increased with time, helping to reduce swelling,
redness, and pain.
It is VERY IMPORTANT for post-surgery
patients to seek massage therapy immediately in order for
them not to suffer needlessly in pain for months and years
because of untreated contractures, muscle adhesions, guarding
muscles and scar tissues and its resulting consequences of
reduced range of motion. Orthopedic massage has been scientifically
proven to assist in solving these type of post-surgery issues.
Orthopedic Massage therapy helps post-surgery
patients in reducing their post-surgery trauma, pain, and
assists in improving the mobility and flexibility of tissue