SHATTERED – REHABING AN ARM INJURY 

While backpacking in 2015, Marybetts fell and injured her left elbow, cracking the head of the radius and shattering her medial epicondyle into seven fragments. Her surgeon inserted 11 pins and two stainless steel plates into her elbow, afterwards telling her that she might never be able to do massage again. Marybetts decided to put together an intensive rehabiliation program which included bodywork, self-massage, physical therapy, active-isolated stretching, acupuncture, pool exercise and supplements. After many hours on this program, she was able to return to doing normal massage, and is able to lift heavy objects and do garden work as well. Her physical therapists have said she has made "amazing progress" – far beyond what would normally be expected for such a serious injury to the elbow joint.

 

Using x-rays, doctor's post-operative report, photos and excerpts from her journal, Marybetts discusses the program she designed for herself, its pros and cons. She also discusses some of the issues that the injury and rehabilitation brought up that are relevant to our work as massage therapists. For example, how do we encourage our clients when they are injured or hurting, particularly when their prognosis is not very optimistic or progress seems very slow? How can bodywork be of the most help in such a situation? How can we communicate to our clients that they only have one chance to heal right?  Students will practice some of the exercises she found particularly effective, explore how these exercises worked, and practice using a goniometer(an instrument to measure joint range of motion)

Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author

Herbs, vitamins and essential oils

Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author
Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author
Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author

Elbow X-ray after surgery. Note the pins and plates

Range of motion 10 months into rehabilitation

Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author

Elbow incision after surgery

Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author

Incision after daily self-massage with Vitamin E Oil

Marybetts Sinclair – Natual Vision Coach, Massage Instructor, Author

This is the elbow of someone with the same injury that Marybetts had, without any rehab

Active-isolated stretch of triceps