Contraindications - Should I treat this person??
I have had someone approach me asking for massage to alleviate some symptoms that I've not heard of before - 'pins and needles', which can be felt all over the body but also can be localised when arms/legs are bent for a couple of minutes. He says he hasn't seen a Doctor about it. Has anyone experienced someone with similar symptoms? Should I be redirecting him to his GP?
this sounds like some sort of neural interference which could be anything from a locked muscle in the neck to intial symptoms ofsomething like MS, so you have no idea what you would be dealing with! Obviously neither condition in itself is a contraindication, but you do need a diagnosis first.
I agree with Amanda - pins and needles are almost certainly are due to the nervous system and I wouldn't touch this person myself until their GP had ruled out anything that massage might make worse.
Long term,it may be that the nervous system is being affected by tight muscles and massage will be extremely helpful. It may also be something more superficial, and massage would help to calm down and again help the situation. However the key is that you don't know - this could be a symptom of something else and we're not qualified to diagnose or decide. (I'd also be puzzled about so much of the body being involved.)
Also, as you probably know, if nerves are being impinged by the muscular-skeletal system and this continues it could lead to permanent damage, so the earlier they see their GP the better. But as always, that decision is theirs. However you can decide not to massage if you don't believe it's in the client's best interest (even if they disagree.)
Best of luck to you and your client.
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An osteopath is also an appropriate person to refer them to for diagnosis. The osteopath will also refer onward to GP if necessary.