Lymphatic drainage massage, also known as manual lymphatic drainage, is a gentle form of massage used to relieve painful swelling in your arms and legs caused by lymphedema. Lymphedema often affects people recovering from breast cancer surgery.
How do you massage lymphedema?
Place your hand on your hip on the side that has lymphedema. Gently massage from the outside of your hip (beside your hip bone) using several small strokes. Massage upward along the side of your body to your underarm. Gently stretch the skin as far as it goes naturally and release.
Should you massage lymphedema?
To move waste fluids away from the damaged area, lymphatic massage, which uses a gentle pressure, can help. It’s one technique used to reduce lymphedema. Raakhee Patel, PT, DPT, CLT, is a physical therapist and certified lymphedema specialist who trains people to perform their own lymphatic massage after surgery.
Can lymphedema be improved with massage?
Lymphatic massage can reduce swelling and improve circulation throughout the lymphatic system. Lymphatic massage usually forms part of a treatment program called decongestive lymphatic therapy (DLT). DLT for lymphedema includes: lymphatic drainage massage.
How do you get rid of lymphedema fast?
There’s no cure for lymphedema. Treatment focuses on reducing the swelling and preventing complications.
- Exercises. …
- Manual lymph drainage. …
- Compression bandages. …
- Compression garments. …
- Sequential pneumatic compression.
How do you massage an arm with lymphedema?
Start with your shoulder, gently stretch the skin, pushing the fluid upwards and release. Shift the hand that is performing the massage down to your upper arm. Gently stretch the skin, pushing the fluid upwards and release. Repeat this upward motion on your forearm (elbow to wrist).
Should you massage swollen lymph nodes?
Massage your chest to help reduce swelling. This massage will move the lymph fluid from your neck and chest to your underarm lymph vessels and nodes.
How do you feel after lymphatic drainage massage?
Lymphatic drainage can leave you feeling exhausted. You may want to have a lie down, or at the very least, a very undemanding schedule for the rest of the day. Give your body time to ease back into activity. Lymphatic drainage massage may also leave you really thirsty.
How often should you get a lymphatic drainage massage?
How often should I get a lymphatic drainage massage? It is recommended that you get the series of lymphatic drainage session every three months.
How do you drain fluid from your legs?
Hold the swollen part of your body above the level of your heart several times a day. In some cases, elevating the affected body part while you sleep may be helpful. Massage. Stroking the affected area toward your heart using firm, but not painful, pressure may help move the excess fluid out of that area.
What should you not do with lymphedema?
Avoid trauma or injury to the affected area. Avoid heavy lifting with the affected arm. No new tattoos in the affected area. Do not wear tight clothing, bands, shoes, or jewelry on the affected area.
Is walking good for lymphedema?
Exercises. Gentle exercises, such as walking, are a great way to help the fluids in your body move a little better. Try to go for a walk every day, if you can.
What exercise is best for lymphedema?
Resistance training may be the best choice of exercise for reducing lymphedema. Resistance training is the most frequently investigated form of exercise for lymphedema patients, and appears to show the greatest lymphedema-specific benefit.
Is dry brushing good for lymphedema?
Dry brushing the skin can exfoliate skin and increase circulation to the skin surface, which can aid in keeping the skin healthy. Having healthy skin is an important part of lymphedema care. … Some lymphedema therapy practitioners do include dry brushing as part of their lymphedema self-care routines for their patients.
What causes lymphedema to flare up?
The most common causes of lymphedema include: Cancer. If cancer cells block lymph vessels, lymphedema may result. For instance, a tumor growing near a lymph node or lymph vessel could enlarge enough to block the flow of the lymph fluid.
Does lymphedema ever go away?
Lymphedema can’t be cured, but you can control the swelling and keep it from getting worse. Getting to and staying at a healthy weight may make it better, but “water pills” usually won’t. Specialized lymphedema therapists can also help you manage the condition.