Scar tissue that forms after surgery or injury can be painful and cause a great deal of discomfort. If injuries do not heal properly, more scar tissue can form and it can be even more painful.  Keep reading to learn more about what causes scar tissue pain and how you can find relief.

Understanding Scar Tissue

scar tissue painScarring is the scar tissue left in or around a site after any injury or surgical procedure. Scar tissue can also form from repetitive rolling of the ankle or hyperextension of the knee because it damages muscles, tendons, or ligaments.

Scar tissue replaces normal fibrous connective tissue that has been damaged. It is a tough material that is not as functional as the original tissue that used to exist. It produces visual scars left behind by cuts or puncture wounds when it forms on the skin, and it can also form internally within muscle tissue, tendons, ligaments, or internal organs.

Because of the scar tissue’s limited blood supply, it is also limited in terms of circulation, movement, or sensation. Adhesions are often present in scar tissue and they stick together instead of moving freely. These adhesions can further limit range of motion and cause pain.

Symptoms can include limited range of motion, persistent discomfort in a joint that has undergone one or more surgical procedures, tough or rigid patches in muscle tissue surrounding a post-surgical site, and crunching or “creaky” sensations when moving the injured area.

How to Relieve Pain

There are several different types of treatment methods that can help relieve scar tissue pain. Keep reading to learn more about these various methods and how they can help you.

Joint Mobilization or Manipulation: Your therapist or chiropractor will use his or her hands to facilitate movement into a joint where the movement is limited. These techniques range from gentle to high-intensity pressure depending on the severity of the scar tissue.

Therapeutic Stretching and Strengthening Exercises: Stretching and strengthening can help to return range of motion to where it’s been inhibited by scar tissue. It will loosen and stretch the scar tissue and is especially helpful when combined with massage.

Ice Therapy or Moist Heat Application: Ice or heat can make the scar tissue pliable and become more flexible which allows you to move more freely.

Graston Technique: This effective and specialized treatment aids in breaking up scar tissue and adhesions and restores range of motion to an affected joint. This therapy utilizes stainless steel instruments to glide along the scar tissue to enhance mobility and encourage resorption.

If you’ve been dealing with symptoms of scar tissue pain, it’s important to contact your doctor as soon as possible to determine the best treatment method plan to help alleviate pain.

At Aligned Medical Group, it’s our goal to get to the root of your problem and effectively treat it to relieve your pain. To schedule a consultation with a physician, click here.