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Graston Technique: Massage Therapy Promotes Scar Tissue Repair

Your body is susceptible to internal and external injury. A hamstring tear or rotator cuff tear will form scar tissue on the bone after a fracture. Scar tissue forms as the body heals from injury. Scar tissue can form beneath or on the surface of the skin. 
Massage therapy helps remodel scar tissue that has formed from soft tissue sprains, strains or bone fractures. Scar massage therapy is also known as scar mobilization.
Scar tissue remodeling occurs as you stretch and pull on it. The stretching of scar tissue helps to align the collagen fibers, to allow them to realign back to normal. Stretching helps make the tissue better able to tolerate trauma to the body.
The Graston Technique uses specialized instruments to massage and scrape the skin. This technique helps the physical therapist identify areas of restriction. Doing so helps to reduce the patient’s pain and increase function by:
  • Breaking down the scar tissue and fascia restrictions associated with soft tissue trauma.
  • Reducing restrictions. Stretching connective tissue to rearrange the structure of the damaged soft tissue.
  • Promoting a better healing environment for the injured soft tissue.
Scar tissue grows in the body as a normal response from repetitive muscle strains, bone fracture, or from surgery. It takes about two months to fully remodel injured tissue. The severity of the injury and the body’s healing rate will impact how long the treatment takes. Everyone is different.
Several massage therapy treatments that help with remodeling tissue include:
  • Cross friction massage.  Massaging with one or two fingers perpendicular to the line of the scar, helps to remodel the tissue.
  • Myofascial release (MFR). Massaging the skin with the hands helps to remodel the underlying damaged tissues.
  • Stretching helps remodel scar tissue. Treatments involve stretching and flexibility exercises help improve the scarred tissue’s mobility.
  • Kinesiology tape.  Stretching underlying tissue helps to loosen scar tissue. And ensures proper remodeling takes place.
Scar tissue is not permanent. The body’s neurological system improves with these forms of massage tissue treatments. Massaging a scar that is not healed can lead to damage to the developing scar tissue. Delaying recovery.
Massage therapy may not be best for you. Always check with your doctor when considering any treatment plan from injury.


To learn more about massage therapy, set up a free exploratory examination to learn if The Graston Technique is right for you. 


Moriarty Physical Therapy is the premier physical therapist provider here in the Hudson Valley with centers located near you. To find out more about physical therapy or to book your first appointment with a physical therapist, visit our website at or contact Moriarty Physical Therapy at (845) 454-4137.

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