Massage Contraindication

By Ian Chow, Certified Massage Therapist / Infant Massage Instructor / Oncology Massage Trainer

Length: 1.5 mins read (371 words)

Contraindication is indeed a big word to a lot of public in Malaysia. According to wikipedia, in medicine, a contraindication is a condition that serves as a reason not to take certain medical treatment due to the harm that it would cause the patient. In this article context, we will be looking at the contraindication of massage. In other words, the reason one cannot or should not receive a massage therapy session.

Total contraindications (where massage SHOULD NOT be done at all):
•Contagious diseases (even though it is mild) i.e. fever, flu, cough etc
•Skin diseases
•Went through recent major operations (with at least 6 weeks gap)
•Under the influence of drugs (including prescriptive pain killer) or alcohol
•Medical conditions such as hemophilia, sepsis, pneumonia, hemorrhage, any respiratory failure
•Advanced organ failure


Local contraindications (these areas will need to be avoided):
•Undiagnosed lump, bump, cysts or inflammation
•Cuts or any open wounds
•Undiagnosed pain
•Varicose vein and deep vein thrombosis
•Going through radiation treatment
•Joint dislocation
•Pregnancy (massage should be done only by trained therapist)


Medical contraindications (Treatment / technique will need to be modified accordingly or in more severe case, a doctor advise or approval may need to be gotten for client with these conditions):
•Organ failure (non advance)
•Auto immune disorder i.e. lupus, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease etc
•Motor skill disorder i.e. Parkinson’s disease, spina bifida, multiple sclerosis, arthritis etc
•Nervous system disorder i.e. Alzheimer disease, Bell’s palsy, neurofibromatosis, Tourette syndrome etc
•Seizure disorder (epilepsy)
•Mental health conditions bipolar, schizophrenia, personality disorder etc
• Conditions of spasticity from brain injury, spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, paralysis


As a massage therapist, I am always cautious whenever there are unwarranted signs as below at any part of the body.
1). Extreme pain,
2). Swelling,
3). Warmth,
4). Tenderness
5). Redness
If I am unsure, I would not massage it but to refer the client to a professional medical personnel.

Besides the above, you are absolutely safe to get a massage session. Get in touch with me to book your session now.

Before: What Is Massage Therapy? (In Malaysia Context)
Next: FAQ: What if? (Your burning questions)


Published by

Ian Chow 周 奕 延

Your personal massage therapist

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s