Reply To: Stretching Translated as Pain

July 24, 2016 at 1:06 am

Yes, I had severe pain in my limbs when my neuropathy was active. As I began recovery, the pain gradually lessened. Stretching regimens should not be done when you are in decline, because they are pointless then, but are an important part of rehabilitation when you enter the recovery phase. This cannot be rushed. The key is having an expert PT who can tell when the optimal amount of stretching is reached. This will entail some pain, but it should not be so much that it is unbearable. Ideally, it can be held and tolerated for a minute or so, and repeated daily. If there is no pain there is no stretching, so no gain.

The patient can work with the PT to tell her when a little more displacement can be tolerated. Ideally, the stretching should be enough to make both patient and PT happy with the progress.

Unfortunately, there are some PTs who are insensitive to the pain problem who will try to stretch a muscle too far. This can be very painful. I hope you don’t get such a PT. A good one brings the limb into position slowly and stops near the optimal point.