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Massage therapy is an effective treatment modality that can be used in a wide range of settings. It helps restore the integrity of muscle and connective tissue while improving circulation.

Massage Therapy

Massage therapy can be used as a preventive measure as well as to help facilitate healing. But there are cases where massage therapy is a necessity, and healthcare providers understand its importance in treating patients for a variety of health issues.

Classification as Medically Necessary

Massage therapy can be classified as medically necessary by healthcare providers. This gives patients a valuable tool in treating their illness or pain symptoms and also allows them to obtain coverage from their insurance providers.

In order to be deemed necessary, your doctor must identify a diagnosis that warrants the use of massage therapy as a treatment. This requires a professional exam and health history intake.

Typically, insurance providers require treatments to be necessary for the diagnosis and treatment of a given condition. They also require the procedure to meet certain standards of the medical community.

In order to ensure that massage therapy treatments are covered and deemed a necessity, doctors must make sure to provide proper documentation of your condition and any related procedures.

The following are 3 scenarios in which massage therapy would be a medically necessary:


Issues related to the sciatic nerve can cause great discomfort for patients. It’s usually experienced around the hip and down the back of the leg. Sciatica can occur from a variety of factors including impingement, trauma, and inflammation.

Not only can massage therapy release muscle such as the piriformis, which can directly impinge the sciatic nerve, but it can also help release the body’s natural endorphins that provide relief from pain.

Rotator Cuff Injury

The rotator cuff muscles provide stability to the upper arm and shoulder joint. Comprised of a group of small muscles, the rotator cuff is prone to injuries. This is especially common in athletes who perform high-velocity throwing movements during sports activities.

Massage therapy helps reduce inflammation and minimize the development of scar tissue after an injury. It can also be used to help reposition the torn fibers and allow for proper healing to take place.

Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Issues

TMJ issues affect a large percentage of the population. It can lead to symptoms that include chronic pain and spasms of the surrounding muscles of the jaw, head, and neck. Headaches are also linked to problems with the TMJ.

TMJ can be a result of excessive grinding (bruxism), trauma such as whiplash, postural issues, and chronic stress.

Massage therapy is effective in treating TMJ issues. A massage therapist can evaluate your alignment and perform a comprehensive orthopedic assessment that includes range of motion testing.

Treating the muscles around the TMJ and those of the head, neck, and shoulders provides significant relief to patients. Restoring balance in these muscles can improve function, which may eliminate the source of pain for many individuals.

Massage therapy can be an essential component to the treatment of many health conditions. Sciatica, rotator cuff injuries, and TMJ dysfunction are just 3 examples of times when massage therapy is a necessity.

Massage therapy treatments deemed medically necessary may be covered by insurance providers, making it easy to get the treatment you need for improved health and relief from chronic health issues.

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