resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
February, 2012, Vol. 12, Issue 02
A Massage Protocol for Peripheral Neuropathy
By Rita Woods, LMT
My last article in the October 2011 issue focused on diabetic peripheral neuropathy and I want to stress the importance of reviewing that information before proceeding on to this protocol. This protocol is only successful when you have full client participation and when you understand the clinical significance and importance of this potentially devastating condition.
Under treating or failing to engage the client in their own treatment can render this protocol useless. This is a protocol that requires 100% participation and commitment from the therapist and client.
While my focus has been on diabetic peripheral neuropathy, is important to note that this protocol also works for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN). Some chemotherapy agents cause peripheral neuropathy that is so disturbing and painful to the patient that they consider stopping their chemotherapy treatment. Because that is not a viable option, oncologists will sometimes adapt the chemotherapy treatment in hopes of lessening or preventing the neuropathy.
Let's revisit some pathophysiology of peripheral neuropathy as stated in my first article, "distal circulation is compromised and the blood vessels themselves become occluded beginning with the small capillaries. Unable to supply the surrounding tissue and nerves with nutrients and oxygen the resulting oxidative debt ... causes nerves to malfunction sending signals to the brain of pain, tingling, burning and numbness." And now let's recall one of the chief benefits of massage: increased circulation.
This peripheral neuropathy massage protocol can be painful to the client so care must be taken to work to the client's tolerance in each session. That being said, however, it's important to bear in mind that the ultimate goal is to gradually increase pressure so that eventually you are working tissue "to the bone." Naturally, this is a process. It may be that in the first few sessions all you can do is touch their feet. Remember, you're looking at a long-term relationship with the client so don't rush as the process can take months, depending on the severity of the neuropathy and the cooperation of your client.
Daily, detailed self-care is essential in order to improve or reverse the tissue damaged caused by peripheral neuropathy. The suggested client homework is as follows: Spend 15 minutes each day on each foot. Lightly massage both feet as deeply as you can without causing pain.
Perform full range of motion exercises at your ankles. A fun way to do this is to "write out" the alphabet using your ankle joints and toes. Grasp each toe at the tip in massage and squeeze as deeply as you can without causing pain. Work the entire toe from the tip to the base on both feet.
Deeply stroke the skin of both feet moving in an upward direction toward your knee. Next squeeze and massage all of the tissue of your feet starting between the toes, include the front and back surfaces of your feet. Squeeze, press and massage the entire foot as deeply as you can without causing pain.
Stroke the skin of both feet from your toes to your knees once again moving in the direction towards the knees. Massage the calves then repeat the range of motion exercises at your ankles.
Whenever possible, throughout the day, take off your shoes and rub your feet on the floor, bend and wiggle your toes, roll a tennis ball under the sole of your bare feet, perform your range of motion exercises and massage her feet deeply.
Sixty-minute massage therapy sessions should be performed by a massage therapist once a week for the duration of the symptoms along with the client "homework" outlined above. Remember that infrequent, non-detailed therapy is ineffective and the main goal is consistent, daily, deep work.
For therapists who are also reflexologists, this protocol can be a nice addition to your service. For anyone interested in learning a detailed reflexology protocol that lends itself well to this peripheral neuropathy work, contact me about for more information. You'll find that combining these two therapies is a formula for success.
Editor's Note: For additional information, see Step-By-Step Massage Therapy Protocols for Common Conditions by Charlotte Michael Versagi with contributions by Rita D. Woods. Published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2011. To find this book and more on medical protocols, visit www.darienlourde.com.
Click here for more information about Rita Woods, LMT.
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