Post Mastectomy Massage Therapy

It's estimated that as many as one-third of all women will at one point be impacted by breast cancer. And while the early detection and treatment of breast cancer - the most common cancer among all women - has made significant strides over the past several years, eliminating the cancer from the body can take its toll. For instance, a mastectomy is a surgery that removes all breast tissue from the patient's breast in an effort to treat a breast cancer diagnosis and rid the body of cancer. Mastectomies can also be conducted as a preventative surgery for qualified patients.

While effective, mastectomies are significant surgeries, so much so that there's often a sizeable recovery period before the patient feels truly like themselves again. One treatment that can help encourage healing following a mastectomy is by undergoing a massage therapy program. Under such a program, a registered massage therapist will assess the patient's situation and devise a massage therapy plan that helps the patient feel good and also speeds their recovery.

Some common issues that women are likely to face following a mastectomy include:

  • Loss of motion range and an overall feeling of stiffness.
  • Scar tissue.
  • Fatigue.
  • Discomfort, especially when laying down.
  • A lack of feeling in the chest.

So how can massage therapy help? In many ways. Not only does massage therapy help relieve pain and improve blood flow, but it can also greatly improve the patient's quality of life, especially since the patient that is being treated has likely been through a series of painful surgeries and tests in an effort to eliminate the cancer. A registered massage therapist will take into account the patient's medical history, as well as what she wants to get out of a therapy program, and then devise sessions that aim to meet those expectations.

Therapy sessions usually begin with basic massages, where the patient lies in a position that is comfortable to her. Massages may then progress to lymphatic massages and deeper massages. The long-term benefits of massage therapy include an increased range of motion, reduction in scar tissue, restored feeling and an overall sense of feeling relaxed and nurtured.

For more information about post-mastectomy massage therapy, contact The Health Network in London, Ontario today. We often have same day appointments available for our patients.