Lymphatic Wellness

Benefits of Lymphatic Drainage Therapy

Main Actions of Manual Lymph Drainage Techniques


Manual Lymph Drainage Techniques (MLDT) can directly affect the lymphatic system and interstitial fluid and more indirectly all body fluids including the venous and arterial blood circulation, as well as the cerebrospinal fluid.

LDT can also affect the immune system, the autonomic nervous system and through techniques like lympho-fascia release all the musculoskeletal system, the body framework.

Many benefits can results from these abundant applications. 

1‑ To activate fluid circulation

Activation of circulation of lymph, blood capillaries and veins, interstitial liquids, cerebrospinal and synovial fluid, etc..

Applications: help to “reroute” stagnant fluid (edema, primary and secondary lymphedema) in skin, muscles, viscera, joints, cranial sutures, periosteum, chambers of the eyes, cochlea, etc.


A‑ TOXINS: As part of treatment to promote tissue regeneration, for example where there are scars,

stretch marks, or wrinkles; or where the patient has had a fracture or surgery; some therapists use it for anti‑aging applications.

B‑ FAT: most every time fat content is present in the body lymphatic vessels are present to help evacuate them.

C‑ MACROMOLECULES (PROTEINS): LDT helps eliminate protein-rich fluid from the extracellular tissue, helping reabsorption of edema.

3‑ TO STIMULATE THE IMMUNE SYSTEM. This can help the immune system in the following ways:

  • LDT can be utilized for preventative action.
  • Lymphatic drainage techniques have been found to help with chronic and subacute inflammatory processes, e.g. chronic fatigue syndrome, auto‑immune disease, arthritis, bronchitis, sinusitis, tonsillitis, laryngitis, acne, eczema, etc.


Stimulation of the lymphatics tends to increase parasympathetic and diminish sympathetic tone, the “fight or flight” response. This can be very helpful in dealing with:

  • Stress, depression
  • Sleeping disorders


LDT alleviates tissue fluid stagnation and inhibits type C nociceptors which trigger pain (Földi, Alois, Brugger). It is effective in dealing with some kinds of chronic pain.


Skeletal or smooth muscle spasms, constipation, etc.


Indications for Lymph Drainage Therapy (LDT)


1- Angiology - cardiology - lymphology:

Edema is abnormal accumulation of fluid in the extracellular compartment. Not all edemas are good indications for LDT and all will not respond in the same manner.


  • Lymphedema or lymphostatic (high protein) edema: in these cases, the lymphatic system itself is not functioning properly. This is a mechanical insufficiency. Lymphostatic edema is one of the principal medical indications for lymphatic drainage, in combination with other modalities.
  • Lymphodynamic edemas, by contrast these are conditions in which the lymph vessels are still functioning properly but they cannot remove the excessive accumulation of fluid in the connective tissue.
  • Edemas of different origins may include:
  • Traumatic: strained muscles, sprained ligaments, joint dislocations, tendinitis, tenosynovitis, fracture (before,during,after being in a cast), hematomas, “ski thumb” injury, etc.The reduction of the edema makes possible earlier, less painful mobilization, and prepares the tissue before applying the plaster.
  • Post-infectious (dental, ENT, etc.)
  • Dermatologic: chronic eczema, etc.
  • Pediatric
  • Premenstrual, cyclic-idiopathic
  • Gynecologic
  • Neurologic: for neuralgia, facial paresis, multiple sclerosis, etc.
  • Edemas associated with rheumatism or autoimmune diseases (e.g., arthrosis, polyarthric problems)
  • Nephrologic (nephrotic)
  • Lipolymphedema
  • Edemas of venolymphatic origin

Nearly all conditions may be drained: from the early stages of venous disease to varicose veins, post-thrombotic leg edemas and hypodermitis, and even late chronic complications such as venous ulcer. Always keep in mind, however, the absolute contraindication of acute phlebitis.



  • Arteritic ulcer, and other types of ulcers (e.g. diabetes mellitus ulcer)
  • Arterial hypertension
  • Arteritis, intermittent claudication (intermittent limping)
  • Raynaud’s disease

2- Dentistry, Orthodontics:

  • Tooth pain
  • Post- extraction pain, edema, inflammation, hematoma, scarring, etc.
  • Orthodontia, root canal, orthodontic surgery
  • Gingivopathy (gum disease), Periodontitis

3- Dermatology (skin):

  • Acne vulgaris
  • Rosacea
  • Seborrhea
  • Chronic and allergic eczema: avoid the area in the early stage to prevent inflammatory or allergic reactions.
  • Perioral dermatitis (from cortisone treatments)
  • Certain pigmentation spots

4- Esthetic:

  • Skin complexion
  • Erythrosis (telangiectasia or couperose)
  • Tissue ptosis
  • Wrinkles
  • Adiposis, cellulite

5- General / Metabolic:

  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Chronic pain
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), Epstein-Barr virus.A very common disorder, not yet well understood.
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), Epstein-Barr virus.A very common disorder, not yet well understood.
  • Autonomic dystonia
  • Sleeping disorders
  • Snoring
  • Detoxification: fasting, dieting, tobacco withdrawal, withdrawal from other substance dependency.
  • Toxic chemical poisoning
  • Jet lag
  • Alcohol hangover
  • Metabolic effects on cholesterol, uric acid, etc.

8- Hepato-gastroenterology:

  • Chronic constipation
  • Chronic gastritis, gastroenteritis, stress ulcers, enterocolitis, chronic colitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Chronic ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease
  • Malabsorption, celiac disease
  • Food poisoning

9- Infectious Diseases: (also check dermatology, general, ophthalmology, pneumonology):

You can use it with pediatric clients (children) or geriatric patients (elderly people). Take care to do short sessions initially to avoid inflammatory reactions.

  • Chronic pharyngitis, tonsillitis, laryngitis, rhinitis, otitis, syringitis
  • Chronic sinusitis

10- Neurology (nerves):

  • Headache, migraine
  • Post trauma symptoms (headaches, vertigo)
  • Concussion (commotio cerebri, commotio spinalis)
  • Spinal injuries
  • Cerebral palsy (Little’s disease)
  • Facial neuralgia, intercostal neuralgia, herpes zoster neuralgia, etc.
  • Facial paralysis
  • Parkinson’s d•disease (rare diminution of the tremor)
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS): crisis times may become shorter and the remission periods of MS longer with lymph drainage.
  • Vertigo
  • Peripheral nerve disorders / cranial nerve disorders (facial nerve paralysis, trigeminal neuralgia, Bell’s palsy)
  • Myopathy, muscular dystrophy or atrophy)
  • Epilepsy

11- Ophthalmology:

  • Visual acuity
  • Chronic glaucoma
  • Cataracts

12- Orthopedics (bones-surgery):

  • Trauma
  • Hematoma
  • Sprain
  • Dislocation, subluxation
  • Ligament and meniscus pathologies
  • Fracture
  • Post-fracture or post-sprain symptoms (pain, discomfort, etc.)
  • Neck pain, whiplash
  • Low back pain
  • Sciatica: There are many different etiologies of sciatica. 

13- Otorhinolarynggology - ORL (ear-nose-throat):

  • Tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in the ear)
  • Vertigo
  • Hearing loss, otosclerosis
  • Meniere’s disease
  • Sjögren’s syndrome (dry eyes and mouth)

14- Pediatrics:

LDT can be applied to children for all diseases listed. However, be especially careful not to aggravate high fever in a child.

15-  Allergology:

  • Hay fever

16- Rheumatology: Disorders of bone articulations, musculoskeletal system and connective tissue

Lymph drainage can effectively alleviate the edemas of many rheumatologic ailments after signs of acute inflammation have disappeared.

  • Arthrosis (neck, shoulders, hips, knees)
  • Rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, polyarthritis
  • Psoriatic arthritis (arthritis associated with psoriasis)
  • Scleroderma: LDT yields especially good effects on the sclerotic skin of hands and face.
  • Fibromyalgia syndrome
  • Osteoporosis
  • Tennis elbow (lateral humeral epicondylitis), golfer elbow (medial humeral epicondylitis)
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome

  • 17- Sports Medicine:
  • Sport preparation: to improve the condition of muscles before and after a sporting event
  • Muscle spasms
  • Sports trauma: edemas, hematoma (be sure that any bleeding has stopped).
  • Traumatic edemas: torn muscles, sprained articulations and ligaments, joint dislocations, edemas after meniscus and ligament lesions, tendinitis, tenosynovitis, fracture (before/during/after cast), hematomas, "ski thumb" injuries, etc. The reduction of the edema allows for earlier, less painful mobilization, and can prepare the tissue before applying the plaster.
  • Sprains, dislocations, etc.
  • Muscle cramps or pain
  • Ligamentous and meniscal lesions
  • Fractures (in or out of cast)
  • Scars / Fibrosis


  • Pre-surgery: prepares th•tissue for the intervention, drains the tissue, clears the lymph passages to help prevent post-surgery edema.
  • Post-surgery
  • Reduction or prevention of scars and fibrosis, has antalgic and infection-preventing effects, and also has some effectiveness in reducing the formation of hypertrophic scars or “keloids”.
  • Skin grafts
  • Burns and their surgical treatment

20- Veterinary:

Lymph drainage can be applied to many domesticated animals, including dogs, cats, horses, cows, pigs and sheep.








Experts estimate that upwards of ninety percent of disease is stress-related. And perhaps nothing ages us faster, internally and externally, than high stress. Massage is an effective tool for managing this stress, which translates into:

  • Decreased anxiety.
  • Enhanced sleep quality.
  • Greater energy.
  • Improved concentration.
  • Increased circulation.
  • Reduced fatigue.

Massage can also help specifically address a number of health issues. Bodywork can:

  • Alleviate low-back pain and improve range of motion.
  • Assist with shorter, easier labor for expectant mothers and shorten maternity hospital stays.
  • Ease medication dependence.
  • Enhance immunity by stimulating lymph flow—the body's natural defense system.
  • Exercise and stretch weak, tight, or atrophied muscles.
  • Help athletes of any level prepare for, and recover from, strenuous workouts.
  • Improve the condition of the body's largest organ—the skin.
  • Increase joint flexibility.
  • Lessen depression and anxiety.
  • Promote tissue regeneration, reducing scar tissue and stretch marks.
  • Pump oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, improving circulation.
  • Reduce postsurgery adhesions and swelling.
  • Reduce spasms and cramping.
  • Relax and soften injured, tired, and overused muscles.
  • Release endorphins—amino acids that work as the body's natural painkiller.
  • Relieve migraine pain.
Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals
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