What is ScarWorkTM
ScarWorkTM was developed by Sharon Wheeler, a structural integration therapist from Seattle, United States. Sharon was trained with Ida Rolf, the founder of Structural Integration also known as Rolfing.
Sharon Wheeler discovered she was able to change and promote healing in scars while working as a therapist. She has spent over 40 years developing her techniques, and is still continuing to treat clients and runs a training program for experienced physical therapist.
Effects of ScarWorkTM treatment on scar/scar tissue
ScarWorkTM is done primarily to improve feeling and functionality in the scar and surrounding tissues, creating better movement between the layers of the skin, fascia and muscles. Treatments stimulate the circulation, lymphatic and nervous system to encourage renewed healing and promote tissue health.
Visually, cosmetic changes may occur: scars often appear smaller, lighter and less prominent but the emphasis is on the underlying tissues changes.
Tightness in surrounding tissues is reduced, muscle function in the area can be improved. The work starts with the surface layers and moves deeper intro fascial tissue under the scar.
This treatment can help with scars that are:
- With lumps, bumps and dips
- Numb, hyper-sensitive, itchy
- Stuck down
- Causing discomfort
Will it hurt?
ScarWorkTM is not like traditional scar massage. It may be a bit uncomfortable but it should not hurt. If the patients feel pain during the treatments they should tell the therapist immediately so the therapist can change the technique or work further away from the scar. Although seemingly effortless, treatments can instigate whole body shifts where patterns of dysfunction cause by old injuries are released.
How soon treatment can be started
New scars should be fully closed and dry, with no signs of inflammation or infection. ScarWorkTM can start 6-8 weeks post-op or when you have been discharged by your doctor. Also if your doctor is recommending gentle massage for your scar then ScarWorkTM is also suitable.
Which scars can be treated
This treatment will benefit all kinds of scars, from very old to new ones. They can be the result of an accident, operation or cosmetic surgery, such as:
- Knee, hip replacement
- Skin grafts,
- Facial scarring
- Foot surgery
- Abdominal surgery
- Appendix removal
- Gallbladder removal
- Caesarean section
- Breast surgery
- Spinal surgery
- Achilles tendon surgery
- Childhood injury
- Tummy tuck surgery
- And many more
Contraindications for ScarWorkTM treatment
- Keloid scars: unfortunately ScarWorkTM doesn’t seem to be effective on this type of scars.
- Weeping or open wounds.
- Inflammation or infection, including cellulitis. In these cases treatment will be deferred until at least six weeks have elapsed after resolution of the event and will then depend on assessment.
- Patients undergoing radiotherapy. Scar treatment may be given following completion of treatment after a period of no less than six weeks, but this will depend on individual assessment.
- Active, untreated cancer in the area of the scar.