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Surgical Adhesions

May 01, 2009 - 6 comments


I had no idea how painful adhesions are! I am very grateful I found this technique. Check with your doctor to make sure you can/should do this type of intense abdominal massage.

This is a bit difficult to explain, but I am thinking it would be helpful to copy this information and read it while comfortable so you can try to visualize the whole thing.

I am sure there might be others with a bit of a different technique, but I did not order anything special to do this exercise...just followed the lead of the exercise teacher who was helping me.

The exercise teacher had just taken a course from a woman named Umana and she is from Russia..she developed a program called Body logic. You could google the names to find information about Umana and her program, but, again, I did not order anything over the Internet, but I found her website interesting.

I mean, I felt like Superman lying on this if trying to fly!

I put updated information at the bottom of this page, verifying that this really did work (for me at least!)....hoping this helps.

The woman who taught me how to do this is an Exercise Instructor. She said that one reason she wanted to learn this technique was so that she could teach elderly people how to do it since some of our insides "glue together" as we age and that this releases much of the gluing because of all the blood, thus oxygen, it brings to the area.

In my case, I had a total hysterectomy in 2000 and suffered from surgical adhesions for over a year. The pain from the adhesions started about three months post-op. I did not find out about this technique until a year and a half after the pain from the adhesions started. This special massage seems to break up the adhesions and it worked for me.  I figured that if it worked for adhesions that formed naturally in our body, it should work for surgical adhesions. It did!

It is truly amazing. I noticed a HUGE difference immediately. When I sat up after the fist time I did this (about a 15 min. session) I could feel a "FLOOD" or a Rush of blood or something! going to that area. After having (pelvic area) pain about 40 times an HOUR for over a year and a half after my surgery, my pain decreased to only about 10 times a DAY for a few seconds at a time. I did this procedure again about a week after the first session and that gave me even more relief. I think it was about four months until I had to do it again. Eventually I did not need to do this at all. My pain (and adhesions.... see notes below) eventually subsided totally.

The idea is you want to get the blood to the bone, not just the it floods the tendons and gets lots of oxygen there to start healing and breaking up the adhesions.

**My instructor told me to think of a steak and how the tendon is sort of splotchy with blood where it is attached to the bone...well, you want to get the blood totally to the bone so as to really break things up. Regular massage is not "deep" enough.

The ball I used measures 16 inches. Again, though, I did not get the ball thru the website (Bodylogic) but you can go there and check it out if you want. The website is all about body rolling and about the woman who developed the technique.
I got just an ordinary ball in a toy section at Target and it looked similar to the one my exercise instructor used when she was teaching me how to do this. The ball I have has a picture of Blues Clues on it!  Hey, it works. It probably is bigger than the ones they recommend, but, if you think about it, it is squishy to the point where once all my weight is on it, it probably shrinks down to about ten inches. And, I just put my "front" onto the ball for the pelvic area pain and NEVER on my back.

Here is how I did it...leaning my body weight into it, literally placing the ball underneath me starting on the pubic bone and "rolling" on the ball...slowly.

I would lay on the pubic bone and just stay there for a few minutes... trying to put as much weight on the ball as possible (hard to do  and you feel like Superman lying on a table trying to fly...does that make sense?) and then take about four minutes or so to SLOWLY (while remembering to take deep breaths now and then) work my way out to the right side where the ovary once was on that side. After you get there, go back slowly to the pubic bone...breathe deeply. When you get to the pubic bone again, then go to the other side, following a path, if you will, of where you imagine the fallopian tube once was. So, you are rolling in something like a "V" formation. After you get to the left side where the ovary once was, then go back to the pubic bone...and, you are done. But, take about 15 minutes to do the whole procedure. You only need to make a V formation path once... taking time to do it well.

**********************Notes after a laparoscopy....August 2007***********************

At first I did this technique twice in two weeks. Then I had to do it about once every two months or so...then about once a year. When my doctor did a laparscopy on me in June,07 (hoping to find adhesions so we could figure out why I had been having pain, which turned out to be a ruptured disk) he was shocked at how "clean" my insides were. He said he actually consulted another doctor about it. He said that you always see evidence of any type of abdominal surgery no matter how invasive (or not) the surgery. And, since I had such a huge surgery back in 2000, he expected to see some type of adhesion debris...but did not see anything. A great testimonial to Body rolling!

I always suggest checking with the doctor. I am not a doctor, just a person who was miserable from the pain of adhesions.

It does hurt a little while you are doing it, that is for sure, since you are initially pressing on the pubic bone with all the weight you can manage to put on the ball. And then you roll slowly to where the ovaries once were and yes, it is not the most pleasant feeling, but it is a "good hurt" if you know what I mean.

I have also used the type of Medicine ball that is "squishy." I bought one for the sake of weight training and for a just in case those nasty things return!

Take care and good luck!


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Avatar universal
by rish941, May 22, 2009
hi Ms Marrie

my mother, who suffering from small bowel adhesion, is experiencing continous abdominal pain(the area of the pain has also enlarged) after trying out this exercise , please clarify that, despite pain should this exercise be continued with, will bearing with this pain for a few days eventually help my mother to completely do away with her adhesion problem.


106886 tn?1281291572
by Mary 53, May 22, 2009
Hopefully your mom checked with her doctor before starting this exercise! That is the first thing I mentioned on the journal entry. I am not a doctor, but can tell you what worked for me. I decided to put this information up because it was so helpful for me, but I do advise that women print off the information so they can take the time to digest all of the information... and, again, talk to the doctor before trying such a program.

Some people know about using massage to break up adhesions and there seem to be different types of massage. I can only tell you what worked for me and that I got my adhesions after major surgery.

Bear in mind that my adhesions were the result after a radical hysterectomy. During a colonoscopy, the doctor confirmed that I had adhesions. But, since my surgery involved removal of the ovaries ... and, much of my pain was in the area where the ovaries had been, I spent much time (of the 15 minutes or so) doing the bodyrolling on my pubic bone as I stated in the entry where I described how I did this exercise. I slowly rolled out to the spot where the ovary once was and then back to the pubic bone. Then I ventured out from the pubic bone again to where the other ovary once was and then back to the bone and that was it. Lots of deep breathing througout the whole exercise.

Some people think that this exercise involves rolling around the whole stomach area, but it does not... which is why I go into such detail in my explanations.

In my case, I got immediate relief, but I had to do the exercise again about a week later thinking that I would be able to break up even more adhesions. I did it about once a week for about four weeks and then I did not do it for about another three months. I got to the point where I had to do this exercise about once every three months for about two years then to about once a year... then not at all.

That is as specific as I can get... Hopefully your Mom has been in touch with the doctor to see what is recommended.

There might be more information on the website for Bodylogic that I mentioned in my entry. I also mentioned the woman's name who developed the program for different types of adhesions. My exercise teacher had just taken a class from the people at Bodylogic about a week before I told her of my pain from adhesions. I just got very lucky in this regard. I would think that the exercise that my instructor taught me was specifically designed for women who've had a hysterectomy, but I am not sure... this all happened in 2002.

I am just wondering if something else is going on in your Mom's case, so I would certainly think she would not want to add more pain. But, maybe in this writing, you will find some helpful information.

Take care,


Avatar universal
by ted830, Jul 25, 2011
Maybe :

106886 tn?1281291572
by Mary 53, Jul 27, 2011
yes... The teacher who trained me had just had two weekend-long training with Yamuna. A lot of my long-time MedHelp friends and I still refer to this as Bodyrolling. Thanks for the website. She's pretty easy to find on line. I think she's been at this for about 25 years but unfortunately not enough people know about her work (in my opinion). It was a life-saver for me!

Avatar universal
by curlywhan, Apr 28, 2014
How long after your surgery did you wait until you started the rolling?  I think I am going to need to try this.  I had my right ovary removed almost 2 weeks ago and the pain that I was hoping would stop has unfortunately started back up again.

106886 tn?1281291572
by Mary 53, Apr 29, 2014
Hi Curlywhan,

You would need to check with your doctor. I don't think of body-rolling as something that cold be done until you have healed internally. Please find out what your physician's office suggest regarding when you could or should start this somewhat aggressive treatment.

However, I have a few thoughts....

I did not learn aout body-rolling until about a year and a half after my surgery.

I started having abdominal pain about three months after my radical hysterectomy. I was told there was nothing that could be done for me because doing surgery to remove the adhesions would only create more adhesions. It was about a year later that I had the colonoscopy (as mebpntioned in the article) that confirmed the existence of the adhesions, and it was a few months after that when I finally learned about the body-rolling. I'll forever be grateful for this technique and I find it sad that so few women know about the treatment. It changed my life.

I've heard some women say they were encouraged to massage the abdominal area with their hands shortly after surgery but I can't recall the time frame. Call your doctor's office to find out if they can suggest some type of massage so you can help avoid scar tisue from forming, and find out when it would be safe to start doing it.

I found some information that might be of additional help. I've heard that even stretching the area (in this case, doing some Pilates moves has been suggested, but do call your doctor first to get the Okay.

Not all women suffer from surgical adhesions after surgery, but a quick google search will prove that there are many women out there with chronic pain from adhesions. I applaud you for looking for answers now so that you will have some suggestions regarding how to treat (or prevent) the adhesions that could be forming.

Take care  ~ Mary

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