Aug 14 2014
Any surgery, be it a cesarean section or a total hip replacement, will leave its mark. Aside from the unsightly scar that we hope will fade, there are hidden changes that occur beneath the skin’s surface.
Scar tissue can limit our movement and be a precursor for injury.
As the pain of a recent surgery eases, the soft tissues beneath and surrounding the wound reorganize into a denser, thicker and less hydrated tissue. The connective tissue fibers within the scar are randomly laid down. In healthy tissue the connective tissue fibers are parallel, helping to create a strong and flexible body. The newly formed scar tissue lacks the prior organization and hydration, impedes full movement and makes the body more vulnerable to injury.
Scar tissue can pull you down. As the wound heals, the scar tissue may be shorter than the original tissue. This is probably because we brace our bodies to avoid further pain, so the scar tissue then heals in a shortened position. This myofascial shortening pulls us down, ultimately eroding our posture. For example, after a caesarian section, scar tissue can create a shortening of the abdomen that can lead to a forward rounding of the upper back and head forward position. Down the road, this can result in neck pain.
Surprisingly, recurrent headaches, sinus infections, chronic pain or any number of seemingly unrelated problems may be actually be connected to an old surgical scar. Scar tissue is dryer, thicker and denser than normal tissue. It becomes a resistor, interrupting or limiting the flow of energy throughout the body. Energy, also referred to as “Qi” in Chinese medicine nourishes and supports all of the cells, organs and their functions. An interruption of this flow of energy can impede healing and contribute to illness.
Acupuncture can help scar tissue to become more elastic and better hydrated. The Acupuncture needle creates an opportunity for the connective tissues to heal in a more organized pattern. As the tissue normalizes, acupuncture often improves the appearance of scar tissue. Concurrently, the needle restores the flow of energy throughout the injured area. Chronic headaches, digestive problems, hormonal issues, chronic pain and postural problems often resolve as the scar tissue normalizes and becomes healthy and resilient once again.
What are signs that scar tissue is creating problems? Is your scar still tender long after the surgical site has healed? Is the scar thick or ropey? Do you have chronic problems that don’t respond to other treatments? Scar tissue often creates an energetic roadblock, preventing the healing that you seek.
Five Element Acupuncture supports the health of the mind, body and spirit to come into balance after surgery and at any time in your life. Call us at 973.509.8464 • 212.529.1901 or book on line to schedule an appointment.