My goal in writing this article is to educate the public, but most principally medical students and physicians and surgeons to the need to inform post-surgery patients of the benefits of massage therapy in reducing contractures, relaxing muscles which have become tight and guarding due to the trauma of the surgery and the displacement by surgical tools, and the laying down of collagen substructures which cause scar tissues around the incision and surrounding tissues. There is always enormous swelling and 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 7 days of healing. Of course pressure and intensity of massage will be light at first and will increase as time goes on helping to reduce swelling, redness, and pain.
I encounter many clients who are post-surgery and who have never received any instruction by their general physicians or surgeons to seek massage therapy as an integral and necessary part of their post-surgery treatment. I don’t know whether this information is not made available at universities or whether the consequences of neglecting to inform patients is not fully appreciated.
The result is that the post-surgery population is suffering 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. Therapeutic massage has been scientifically proven to assist in solving these type of post-surgery issues.
I have achieved tremendous reductions in pain and noticeable and measurable improvements in tissue texture suppleness, and increased range of motion from the application of repeated therapeutic massage treatments for a range of surgery patients. The clients which have benefited from these treatments include shoulder rotator-cuff surgeries, breast reconstruction post-mastectomy, knee re-construction, hip replacement, and bi-femoral bypass affecting the groin and abdominal regions.
I would like to emphasize the importance to our post-surgery patients in reducing their post-surgery trauma, pain, and assist in improving the mobility and flexibility of tissue and joints through the use of regular therapeutic massage treatments.
I am disappointed and angry when my patients tell me that their surgeons and physicians tell them that there is no benefit for them to receive massage therapy post-surgery. My patients comments are all the same:
“I was not told of the benefits of therapeutic massage treatments after my surgery”.