Massage Therapy for Phantom Limb Pain

| Categorized: Vancouver Massage Therapy.

Photo:  photophilde, Flickr

photophilde, Flickr

A high percentage of patients of amputation often describe feelings of tingling, stinging, twisting, pins and needles, and stabbing pain in a highly localized area.  These sensations can range from mild and infrequent to severe and chronic.  As the frequency and intensity of the sensations tends to diminish over time, many patients report that they never completely go away.  Massage therapy can reduce the effects of phantom pain, which can prove to be immensely helpful when currently Western medicine has limited treatment options to offer.

An experienced Registered Massage Therapist can apply many different techniques to help to ease or eliminate the discomfort and pain associated with phantom limb pain such as:

  • Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) – A technique in which the patient consciously tenses and relaxes the muscles in order to alleviate the anxiety and tension surrounding the amputation area.
  • Therapeutic Touch – Helping an amputee to change the dysfunctional energetic patterns that perpetuate their pain, and teaching them visualizations that they can apply at home.
  • Cranial Sacral Therapy – Increases cerebro-spinal fluid circulation which helps to clear blockages in the cranium, spinal cord and sacrum.  As phantom pain is viewed as an abnormality in how the brain and nervous system processes information, returning balance to the cranial-sacral network can bring significant relief to an amputee.

Read more about phantom limb pain and treatment here.

Vancouver RMT article of the week


Broadway Wellness Massage and Therapy is a friendly, multidisciplinary healthcare clinic located in the Fairview District of beautiful Vancouver, BC.  Over 10 years ago we began with a focus on Vancouver Registered Massage Therapy, and since have expanded to include Vancouver Chiropractic Care with Network Spinal Analysis, and Vancouver Naturopathic Medicine.

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