Massage & Bodywork

JANUARY | FEBRUARY 2017

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TABLE LESSONS best practices Massage as a Catalyst Helping Other Therapies Work Better By Douglas Nelson At a social event, a client requested that I speak to a friend of hers. As I was introduced to Mrs. L., I could see she had her left arm in a brace and was holding that arm close to her chest. The level of protective behavior immediately got my attention. Mrs. L. said, "I fell, fracturing my arm, which was then surgically repaired with plates and screws. When I complained about my pain, however, the doctor kept telling me how good the X-ray looked and how everything was healing well. If it was healing so well, why am I in so much pain?" Mrs. L. said, "I fell, fracturing my arm, which was then surgically repaired with plates and screws. When I complained about my pain, however, the doctor kept telling me how good the X-ray looked and how everything was healing well. If it was healing so well, why am I in so much pain?" 28 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k j a n u a r y / f e b r u a r y 2 0 1 7 "If there was enough force to break your arm, what do you think it did to the muscles and nerves around the trauma site?" I asked. "Has anything been done to address the soft-tissue trauma?" I could see that Mrs. L. was refl ecting on the role of soft tissue and her pain, something overshadowed by the overt trauma of the fracture. We agreed to meet the following day for an appointment. SENSITIVITY MAP At the beginning of our session, I watched Mrs. L. remove her long-sleeve shirt, being careful to let the fabric make as little contact with her skin as possible. Lying on the table, the apprehension in her face was remarkable. "Can you tell me where and when you feel the most pain?" I inquired.

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