MLD (Manual Lymphatic Drainage)

MANUAL LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE is a topic that I have been learning more and more about recently and boy, it’s important!

For the past 4 years I have had MLD twice a week (each session lasting 30 minutes). The therapist starts at my neck, moves down my chest/ stomach/ groin and then starts working on my leg. I’ve recently come to the conclusion that the massage I have been receiving (up until today) isn’t enough for my Lymphedema needs. I need to up my MLD game big time.

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I love my therapist, but she cannot give me the 1.5 hours I need to do a proper Lymphatic massage. So I am currently researching other solutions.

I think this is a really important thing to note:Β from time to time we need to make changes and evolve with our Lymphedema. To not be scared to change therapists if we need to. This is where I am in my own journey.

I recently took a trip to Milan and met with a specialist in MLD and Lymphedema Bandaging, Dr Denisa Giardini. She specialises in the Vodder technique of MLD and really opened my eyes to what is lacking in my own treatment. 30 minutes is just not enough to get the lymphatic system flowing properly (in a body that already has a mechanical problem with lymph flow!). A proper Vodder style massage lasts around 1hr- 1h 30mins!

A lot of people do their own MLD at home and use special pneumatic compression pumps (such as the Flexitouch system– which I don’t have yet, but would really like one). Other lymphie’s swear by these pumps and have good results using them. I even know of some specialist who use this as their primary treatment for patients, but I disagree with this. Pumps areΒ not a replacement for MANUAL Lymphatic Drainage. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. This is widely regarded as ‘truth’ in the lymphedema medical world.