This concise, evidence based treatment guide relies on research, physiology, clinical experience, and case studies to effectively teach applications of gua sha for common soft tissue injuries including tendonosis, myofascial pain, nerve entrapment syndromes, unresolved pain following surgery, joint sprains, muscle strains, and trauma. This newly expanded edition is spiral bound, over 100 pages and printed on 5.5 X 8.5 inch pages. Case studies provide basic instruction for those new to gua sha and advanced applications for the seasoned clinician. From a Western perspective, the reader will be able to intelligently explain how gua sha eliminates pain, restores function, improves flexibility, and facilitates healing.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) explains gua sha's effectiveness as a result of raising petechaie and clearing stagnant fluids from underlying soft tissue. Current research builds on the traditional view and provides a more detailed understanding of gua sha. Gua sha mechanically stimulates the release of histamine and other substances from mast cells. Histamine dilates capillaries increasing circulation and tissue temperature. This is important since impaired circulation is known to contribute to chronic soft tissue pain including tendonosis. Anaerobic metabolism and production of lactic acid also creates an acidic environment resulting in abnormal cellular production. Over time, pain increases, tissues weaken, and flexibility and strength gradually decline. Gua sha interrupts this vicious cycle restoring circulation and facilitating normal cell production and healing. Pain resulting from impaired circulation is not likely limited to tendonosis. Success in treating myofascial pain, trigger point pain, and pain lingering after trauma and surgery can be expected.
Mr. Lott's degrees include a BA in Biology from Hiram College and a combined MS and BS in occupational therapy from D'Youville College. Mr. Lott is a practicing occupational therapist and certified hand therapist and sees clients in a regional upper extremity surgical and rehabilitation clinic in Akron, Ohio. His clinical practice (and ability to find new and interesting ways to injure himself) continues to provide the foundation for the successful application of gua sha. In addition to writing the treatment manual, Matt also designed the instruments found here at guashatools.com. Since their introduction in 2005 Matt has personally performed all the hand finishing on every tool's edge. This maintains an unmatched level of quality control.
Essential for patient education, several color photographs are included that demonstrate the normal appearance of petechiae.
Learn the methodology for selecting cases appropriate for gua sha.
Obtain consistent and repeatable results.
Apply gua sha safely by learning contraindications.
Add a valuable skill set to your manual therapy repertoire.
Successfully integrate gua sha into your practice.
Nerve compression including thoracic outlet syndrome
Chronic lateral and medial epicondylosis
Chronic plantar fasciitis
Non-acute ligamentous sprains
Non-acute muscle strains
Chronic tenosynovitis (trigger finger and Dequervain's)
Fibromyalgia and myofascial pain syndromes
Lack of flexibility secondary to long term postural asymmetries
Decreased flexibility following immobilization
Gua sha is an effective treatment for tendonosis because it increases circulation, improves flexibility, and mobilizes scar and adhesions. Withappropriate clients, the technique is taught as part of the home program. When performed in conjunction with a stretching program gua sha restores muscle length and facilitates healing.
Gua sha raises petechiae over chronically painful soft tissue and identifies areas where circulatory function is impaired. These small capillary hemorrhages resemble a bruise and fade within three to seven days. Gua sha results in dilation of blood vessels in skin and underlying connective tissues.
Pictured at left is the lateral epicondyle seen immediately after treatment. Initially red, petechiae fade to resemble a bruise and then resolve completely with no side effects. Educating the client regarding petechiae is an important aspect of treatment. Although striking in appearance, most chronic pain clients accept a transient skin discoloration in return for symptom relief and improved function.
GuaSha Orthopedic Soft Tissue Tools are specifically designed to treat soft tissues affected by muscle strains, ligament sprains, and tendonosis. A variety of shapes makes it easy to choose the best edge for the affected area.