Rough Neck Massage May Cause Stroke

I was going through The Daily Mail, when this bit of news caught my attention. A man,  who used to have neck massages for more than thrice a week, in order to feel relaxed, suffered a stroke. Excerpts:

An Indian man suffered a stroke after enduring a rough neck massage, a bizarre new case report has revealed.

Doctors believe the unidentified patient's love for being caressed may be to blame for the blood clot in his brain.

Medics have spoken of the incident in the prestigious BMJ Case Reports, citing the 'repeated' massages to be the 'trigger factor'. 

The 45-year-old, believed to be from Ludhiana in Punjab, revealed he had between two and four massages each week.

Doctors at Dayanand Medical College & Hospital were told the patient's obsession was due to 'relaxation purposes'.

He was rushed to the hospital with sudden onset aphasia - language impairment - and weakness of both lower limbs.

It is believed the repeated cervical spine manipulation in the form of the frequent neck massages was to blame.

The doctors said this triggered a condition called cervical artery dissection which involves a tear in the artery lining.

This then allows penetration of blood between the vessel layers and can spark the formation of blood clots.

This results in arterial narrowing or even complete obstruction of the lumen, leading to a lack of blood flow to the brain - causing a stroke.

It's not a good idea to go for a neck massage at unknown places.

It is interesting to note that this patient had 'no significant medical history' and no risk factors that made him more likely to have a stroke. This stroke apparently occurred mostly due to repeated neck massages done very roughly and shoddily.

Our neck is one of the most vulnerable parts of our body. Its not wise to subject it to rough massages under inexperienced hands. For that matter, it's not a good idea to risk going for a professional chiropractic neck massage either. Just leave your neck alone.

Now whilst going through this shocking news, I was also reminded about how bending your neck backwards and remaining in that position for some time is also a trigger factor for stroke.

I had shared this  health scare in one of my blog posts as to how a shampoo session at a beauty salon where you are required to tilt your head backwards towards the sink could spark off a stroke.

While it's a good practice to keep your neck clean, care for your neck or try these home-remedies to lessen skin discoloration around the neck or for that matter pamper your neck with the right products to prevent skin ageing in that area, it's never judicious to subject your delicate neck to harsh massages or bend it in awkward, uncomfortable positions. 

As we have seen from the above examples, doing so poses fatal health risks.

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  1. Dr Rajesh5:18 PM

    Deep Neck Massage on Both Sides of the Spine Another thing I see a lot of, which has the potential to actually kill/cause serious brain damage to a healthy person is deep massage right under the base of the skull on both sides of the cervical spine (neck bones). The two main arteries that feed the brain run through here. So that person you think you just put to sleep by giving a really good deep massage too may in fact be blacked out and sustaining brain damage

  2. Expert5:25 PM

    . Too much massage in one area can cause congestion, inflammation, and tightening of the muscles. A therapist should not work more than about ten minutes on one specific area. It is better to work a little, give the area a rest for two days, and then come back to it. It is always better to do too little than too much. Too little will do no harm but too much can cause irritation.


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