Massage Safety

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Massage therapy appears to have few serious risks and is not recommended for certain people. The number of serious injuries reported is very small. Side effects of massage therapy may include temporary pain or discomfort, bruising, swelling, and a sensitivity or allergy to massage oils. Cautions about massage therapy include the following: 

Vigorous massage should be avoided by people with bleeding disorders or low blood platelet counts, and by people taking blood-thinning medications such as warfarin.

People with infectious skin disease, rash, or open wounds Massage should not be done in any area of the body with blood clots, fractures, open or healing wounds, skin infections, or weakened bones (such as from osteoporosis or cancer), or where there has been a recent surgery.

Although massage therapy appears to be generally safe for cancer patients, they should consult their oncologist before having a massage that involves deep or intense pressure. Any direct pressure over a tumor usually is discouraged. Cancer patients should discuss any concerns about massage therapy with their oncologist.

Pregnant women should consult their health care provider before using massage therapy.

Immediately after chemotherapy or radiation, unless recommended by your doctor

People prone to blood clots. There is a risk of blood clots being dislodged. 

If you have heart disease, check with your doctor before having a massage

Massage can:

• directly cause new injuries

• aggravate existing problems

• distract patients from more appropriate care

• mildly stress the body If is not provided by a qualified practitioner

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