Stages of Wound Healing
Knowing about wound healing has helped me to get better results for my clients. Often, clients will come in a week after surgery concerned about their levels of swelling or scared that they have fibrosis. Knowing about wound healing allows me to explain that swelling right after surgery is a natural, normal part of healing - and that no, YOU cannot have fibrosis a week after surgery.
Just to review, the stages of wound healing are:
Hemostasis (from time of injury/surgery to clotting)
What Happens In Each Stage?
During Hemostasis stage, the body forms a platelet plug.
During Inflammatory stage, which can happen at the same time as Hemostasis, injured blood vessels cause localized swelling. Inflammation controls bleeding and prevents infection.
During Proliferative stage, the body is rebuilding using new tissue made up of collagen and extracellular matrix.
During Maturation stage, collagen is remodeled.
How long are our clients in the different stages of wound healing?
There are different timelines for different parts of the body, depending upon tissue affected. What is universal is the percentage of time spent in different phases.
10% of healing is spent in Inflammatory phase
40% of healing is spent in Proliferative phase
70% of wound healing is spent in Maturation phase
Yes, that adds up to more than 100! The beginning and ending of phases overlap one another.
What is a rough estimate of healing times?
Hemostasis (from time of injury to clotting)
Inflammatory (from 1-6 days after injury)
Proliferative (from 9 days after injury)
Maturation (from 21 days to 2 years)
But not for all operations! For instance, healing from a shoulder replacement surgery:
Inflammatory phase (from time of surgery to 4-6 weeks)
Proliferative (from 4/6 weeks - 12 weeks)
Maturation (from 12 - 24 weeks)
The body will heal more slowly from a large injury than a small one, and some people heal faster than others so don't rush your process. In addition, after surgery with a large incision, tissues heal slower than surgery involving an arthroscopic approach.
So During the Inflammatory Stage, Manual Lymphatic Drainage will be used to help the body reduce swelling. Macrophages are busy removing debris and our lymphatic system is the sump pump of the body.
During the Proliferative and Maturation stages, Manual Lymphatic Drainage can still help with reducing remaining swelling with other noninvasive massage modalities and IASTM. And I will use techniques that address scar tissue and help collagen lay down properly.
As a trained MLD Therapist I want you to understand your Healing process so that you will know that during these stages certain techniques will be used and others will not be used.
When you come in and you are a new client there will be a time set for a consultation. This will allow undressing time and time to discuss our treatment plan. This time will also allow me to see in which phase of your healing you are in.
I will be specializing in the reduction of swelling, pain and fibrosis, providing massage for all genders after plastic surgery, including liposuction, Brazilian Butt Lift, tummy tuck / abdominoplasty and facelift.