Massage therapy has been shown to have few serious risks provided it is performed by a properly trained therapist and appropriate cautions are followed.
Avoid massage all together if the following are present and until they are resolved:
severe unstable hypertension
systemic contagious or infectious diseases, including the common cold and flu
acute conditions requiring first aid or medical attention
Avoid massage on the affected area for the following conditions:
General cautions for massage include:
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 is discouraged. Cancer patients should discuss any concerns about massage therapy with their oncologist.
Massage should not be done in any area of the body with blood clots, fractures, open or healing wounds, skin infections, weakened bones or area of a recent surgery.
Vigorous massage should be avoided by people with bleeding disorders, low blood platelet counts and if taking blood-thinning medications such as Warfarin, or Coumadin.