Before we get into how to treat/heal scar tissue, it’s best if you have a really good understanding of what scar tissue is composed of, the different forms it can take in the body, and how it behaves.
In the video below, I ask Mary Cox (physiotherapist) from ClearPassage.com these questions and she gives us a fascinating, illustrated explanation of all these different components.
In the video, we focus on scar tissue in the abdominal cavity, but the same principles are applicable whether your scar tissue is in your hip joint, knee, or anywhere else in your body.
In addition to the physical therapy treatments for scar tissue (adhesions) given in the video, we have also been experimenting with some powerful substances that also soften and (over time) dissolve scar tissue.
These are also treatments that you can do yourself, at home. And if you use them in conjunction with physical therapy, or laser therapy, your results will be even faster:
If you have Intestinal Stricture, click here for the treatment protocol.*
If you have a Rectal Stricture, click here for the treatment protocol.*
Here is an easier tried and tested (by my readers) procedure you can use for abdominal strictures and adhesions that has worked for many to relieve pain and release an obstruction. It also works equally well for other areas of the body (back, hips, knees, etc.). Most people report substantial relief in 24 hours. Simple injuries like acute muscle strains can be healed in 3-4 days (using once or twice per day). Longstanding problems like scar tissue that is several years old may take up to 4-6 months.* And newer scar tissue may be softened or dissolved in only 2 months (of once per day application).*
*NOTE: These treatments are not tested, nor approved by the FDA or any medical body. You proceed entirely at your own risk
If your scar tissue does not involve your digestive system, then skip Step 1 of this protocol.
1. Go On A Liquid Diet
Ideally and for fastest healing of intestinal strictures or obstruction, you should go on an exclusively elemental diet (which results in only liquid, minimal fecal matter) at least until the obstruction clears, and ideally for an additional week after clearance. If you can’t afford this, there are two other forms of liquid nutrition that may work for you, or you can combine these options in a way that works for you:
a) Raw vegetable juicing – juice primarily vegetables, with only enough fruit added to make them palatable (or sweeten with stevia instead). BUT, people with active/bleeding Crohn’s or colitis often cannot tolerate raw vegetable juices, so be sure and test carefully and if you’re at all underweight, this is not a good option
b) Raw (unpasteurized) cow or goat milk – from pasture-fed animals only (not barn-raised and grain-fed). Goat milk is usually better tolerated than cow milk, but make sure milk is RAW. Raw camel’s milk is also usually better tolerated than raw cow’s milk. Never consume pasteurized milk as it will only exacerbate your condition. If you tend to constipation, then you will also need to add extra magnesium citrate to your raw milk (1-3x/day up to 1000 mg/day maximum) to avoid getting constipated from the high calcium levels.
c) Absorb Plus elemental shakes – this is a product I formulated, specifically for people with inflammatory bowel disease (or other advanced illness like cancer, AIDS, lupus, etc.). It is absorbed into your bloodstream within 20 minutes of ingestion and produces liquid, minimal fecal matter. Therefore it is ideal for people with strictures, obstruction, intestinal bleeding or malnutrition.
Each of these liquid nutrient sources are best when combined with homemade bone broths (Chicken and Beef Broth). You can derive your nutrients from only one of these sources, or you can mix and match and combine them together.
If you consume raw vegetable juices, buy organic or ‘no spray’ produce and juice fresh every day (or freeze portions to consume later). Make sure you consume enough juice to provide you with adequate energy each day. Or, combine raw juicing with raw milk or Absorb Plus to add the protein and good fats needed for energy. You should also be taking extra cod liver oil and Udo’s oil (you can add it to the shakes) during this time.
Apply to your abdomen (or wherever your scar tissue/pain/cramping is) using your fingers or a natural hair paintbrush.
Do not use anything synthetic with DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide – a natural substance derived from tree bark) as it will pick up and transport everything it contacts into your skin/bloodstream. Make sure hands and abdomen have been washed with plain soap and water and do not have any creams or fragrance on them.
Allow to dry. Then apply a hot castor oil pack to your abdomen or problem area.
Note: After you have done this protocol a few times, if you think your skin will tolerate a higher DMSO content, then try a solution of 70% DMSO to 30% aloe vera. DMSO tolerance varies widely (with redheads being the most sensitive), so the 50/50 ratio is likely to be tolerated by most, but feel free to adjust up or down as you desire. If you are using it below the waist (excluding the genital area) then you can usually use a higher concentration with no irritation. It is normal for it to itch while drying, but if it causes a rash, then decrease the concentration of DMSO. Some people do notice a garlic-type odor (that can emanate from your skin or mouth) when using DMSO, this is normal and stops as soon as you stop using it.
3. Apply a Hot Castor Oil Pack to Abdomen or Problem Joint/Area:
A castor oil pack is placed on the skin to increase circulation within the scar tissue. It also promotes healing of the tissues and organs underneath the skin. It is often used to relieve pain, increase lymphatic circulation, reduce inflammation, stimulate the liver, and improve digestion. Just remember to use a cold-pressed castor oil and 100% cotton flannel (or wool) – no synthetics. You can use either a hot water bottle or a heating pad as the heat source. Here are detailed instructions:
Castor Oil Pack Components
• Castor oil.
• Two sheets of plastic (garbage bags OK).
• 1 yard cotton or wool flannel.
• Heating pad (if indicated).
• Large old bath towel.
• 3 safety pins.
Preparing a Castor Oil Pack
1. Fold flannel into three thicknesses to fit over your whole abdomen.
2. Cut a piece of plastic 1-2 inches larger than flannel.
3. Saturate the flannel with gently heated oil, but not so much that it is drippy. Fold it over and squeeze until it is oozing. Unfold.
4. Place plastic and old towel over flannel to prevent staining of surface you will be lying on.
5. Lie down, placing flannel over abdomen, putting fitted plastic over the flannel.
6. Now wrap the towel under you, around your torso and pin with safety pins (or just tuck in tightly).
7. Place a heating pad (low heat) or hot water bottle on top of the towel.
8. Rest for 30-60 minutes. Use visualization, meditation, or just sleep. A good time to use castor oil packs is just before bedtime.
9. When finished, it’s best if you don’t get up and walk around and be busy (except to go to the bathroom). Try to stay still and relaxed.
If you are doing your pack at bedtime, have a zip-lock baggie next to your bed, and a towel to remove any excess oil and protect your bed sheets. Fold the oily pack up and put it into the baggie, then drop it to the floor till morning. In the morning, put it in the refrigerator.
11. Store the pack in the covered container or baggie in the refrigerator. Remove it from the refrigerator 1-3 hours before you plan to use it, so that it is at room temperature when you are ready to use it.
12. Each pack may be used repeatedly. When it starts to smell stale, throw it out (don’t try to wash it) and make a new pack.
Note: If this procedure is way too complicated for you, apply a generous amount of castor oil to the skin of your abdomen. Cover that with an old cotton t-shirt or other cloth you won’t mind eventually discarding. Lay your heat source (hot water bottle, heating pad) on top of that. Keep the cloth you use to protect your heat source from the oil to reuse. Eventually it will smell like stale oil, but can be kept for a few weeks at least in a plastic bag. Rest for 30-60 minutes. Stay covered and warm so you can relax. Have a soft cloth or rag handy to catch any oil dripping off your body. You may want to put a towel or plastic underneath your body so your bed doesn’t get oily. It’s not necessary to have a castor oil pack that you keep in the refrigerator. Just do what works for you. I’ve even heard from readers who don’t even bother to apply heat after a while, they just massage the castor oil directly into the skin and they say it works fairly well that way too!
Frequency of Use
To be effective, a castor oil pack must be used at least 3 times a week, although 5 times a week is better. In cases of long-term chronic pain or acute stricture/obstruction, it works best to commit to at least a 4-6 week treatment period using the DMSO solution in combination with a castor oil pack 5-7 times per week, then as needed. Full healing may require 3-6 months of treatment.
If you don’t want to use the DMSO solution first, the hot castor oil pack on its own will provide significant relief from pain and softening of tissues. To actually begin to break down the scar tissue though, you’ll want to combine it with the DMSO solution.
Colonic Massage for Obstruction
If your intestine is obstructed, it is a good idea to also do this colonic massage after the DMSO / Castor Oil treatment – while the abdomen is soft and you are relaxed – to help massage the stuck food through the stricture:
Let us know what works for you in the COMMENTS section below….
Original post September 2011. Most recently updated July 2019.
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