ABOUT MANUAL LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE (MLD)
Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD ) consists of light, rhythmic hand movements to stretch the skin and stimulate the lymphatic system. The aim of MLD is to guide fluid away from areas which are swollen towards the lymphatics in unaffected areas.
MLD is a component of treatment of lymphoedema. It also is effective in the treatment of conditions arising from venous insufficiency, chronic inflammatory conditions eg sinusitis, acne and post traumatic bruising and swelling including post surgery.
Why does it help?
Lymphoedema cannot be cured but it can be managed.
Our treatment programme provides the skills to self manage and the knowledge to seek medical help as needed.
Reduction of swelling
Reduction of heaviness and pain (if present) in the affected area.
Improved range of motion
Improved skin condition.
WHAT IS LYMPHOEDEMA?
Lymphoedema refers to swelling, which can occur in any part of the body although most commonly seen in an arm or leg. It is caused by damage to or malformation of the lymphatic system.
There are two main types of lymphoedema.
Primary lymphoedema occurs if the lymphatic system is poorly developed from birth and certain lymphatic structures are impaired or absent.
Secondary lymphoedema results from treatment or trauma that damages the lymphatic system such as surgery or radiation therapy.
LYMHOEDEMA SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
- A feeling of heaviness or tightness in the affected area
- Rings, jewellery, clothes or shoes may feel tight in the affected area
- Swelling of part or all of the affected area eg your trunk, arm or leg, including fingers or toes
- Tightness/stretching of the skin
- Reduced range of motion of the joints in the affected area
- Hardening and thickening of the skin (fibrosis)
TREATMENT PLAN ELEMENTS
Initial assessment involves a full assessment of the condition, measurements and treatment planning. Treatment includes :
- Skin Care
- Manual Lymphatic Drainage
- Reduce the Risk Education
- Personalised Action Plan
Lymphoedema cannot be cured but it can be managed. You will become familiar with how your condition behaves through various circumstances, be aware of risks, what compression garments you need, how to take care of your skin, your exercise programme and when to seek medical help as needed.
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