13 Jun Lymphoedema & Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage (MLD)
Lymphoedema & Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage (MLD)
Written by Elissa Robbins (Myotherapist)
Lymphoedema is the accumulation of fluid in the interstitium caused by dysfunction or damage to the lymphatic system. When the lymph nodes become blocked, they are unable to be drained and the fluid will accumulate. The main areas that lymphoedema occurs are the arms and legs but it can happen in other areas of the body. The build up of fluid can be gradual or rapid.
What causes Lymphoedema?
- Cancer or cancer treatment
- Removal of lymph nodes
- Radiation can damage lymph vessels causing high levels of lymph fluid in the tissue
What are the symptoms?
- Unexplained swelling throughout body especially the arms and legs that increases over time
- The skin can feel tight and sometimes have altered sensation such as tingling
- Affected limb may feel heavy
- Clothing or jewellery on the affected side will be tighter
Risks associated with lymphoedema include;
- Increased risk of infection to the affected limb. This occurs due to the lymphatic system being compromised and are unable to fight off the infection
- Wounds may take longer to heal when lymphoedema is present
How is lymphoedema treated?
- Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage (MLD)
- Compression garments
How can Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage (MLD) help?
It is a very gentle form of massage used to help with the lymphatic flow and therefore decrease swelling. This is done by ‘clearing out’ the lymph nodes and redirecting the fluid to these viable nodes allowing filtering to occur and fluid returns back to the heart.
If you are interested in learning more or booking a Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage please contact us on 9762 0976