Lymphatic Drainage Massage Etobicoke | Mimico Medical
Lymphatic drainage massage is a manual therapy technique that has seen increased usage in recent years. This is largely due to its role in treating individuals with damaged or compromised lymphatic systems – a common outcome of cancer treatment and other conditions such as fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.
At the Mimico Medical physiotherapy clinic, our physical therapists work in communication with the medical team to provide the highest standard of care – including lymphatic drainage massage. Our focus on one-to-one evidence based treatment is central to our Culture of Care promoting health in the South Etobicoke community.
What is Lymphatic Drainage Massage?
Lymphatic drainage massage – sometimes called manual lymphatic drainage – is a type of medical massage that improves the flow of lymph fluid (or just “lymph”) through the lymphatic system. For patients with a compromised lymphatic system, this decreases the swelling and pain at different points of the body – most commonly found in the legs and arms.
During lymphatic drainage massage a physiotherapist – trained in manual therapy techniques – gently massages specific areas of the body to help lymph drain to an area with working lymph vessels. The goal of the procedure is to aid proper drainage of lymph which reduces swelling and pain, while increasing mobility.
Your Lymphatic System: Lymph Vessels and Lymph Nodes
Your lymphatic system plays a crucial role for your overall health. It is a network of vessels, tissues and organs which moves lymph from tissues in your body back into your bloodstream. This lymph fluid is the waste product of plasma that delivers nutrients throughout your body and must be returned back to the blood.
Your lymph vessels and lymph nodes are central to proper functioning of the lymphatic system. Lymph travels along the vessels to the lymph nodes, which attack bacteria, damaged cells and disease. Think of lymph vessels as pipes and lymph nodes as filters. Both serve to protect your health and boost immunity.
Patients with a damaged or impaired lymphatic system usually suffer from immune deficiencies as well as painful swelling – usually in the arms and legs. This swelling can severely limit mobility – which further hurts quality of life for the patient.
How does lymphatic drainage work?
During lymphatic drainage massage, a trained physiotherapist will gently manipulate specific points of the body to improve the circulation of the lymphatic system. This technique moves lymph from areas of congestion towards the healthy lymph vessels and nodes. Massaging an area without swelling makes room for lymph to flow away from more congested areas – and drainage occurs.
Improving the circulation of lymph in the body will ease the painful tissue swelling that can occur from health conditions that affect the lymphatic system. For patients that suffer from swelling in the arms and legs, lymphatic massage can improve mobility.
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Lymphatic Massage for Medical Conditions
Lymphatic drainage massage is a physical therapy developed to treat the lymphatic system of patients. There are a number of health conditions that affect the lymphatic system, including:
- Lymphedema resulting from cancer treatment
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Chronic venous insufficiency
At Mimico Medical Physiotherapy, our patients benefit from teamwork between physical therapists and medical doctors on site at our Etobicoke location. The serious medical conditions that lead to lymphedema and other lymphatic issues should be receiving treatment from a doctor. If you are concerned with your lymphatic health and have not received a diagnosis already – be sure to mention this to our physical therapy team, or reach out to our medical team.
What is lymphedema?
Lymphedema is swelling that occurs from the accumulation of lymph in the body. This build-up happens because parts of the lymphatic system – notably the lymph vessels and lymph nodes – are damaged or impaired in some way. The lymph cannot drain away and is congested in the body.
Swelling from lymphedema is common in the arms and the legs and can bring an increased risk of infection. For many patients, swelling in the legs harms their ability to walk around.
Lymphedema is usually a complication from cancer treatment – either from radiation treatment or tumour removal. For example, part of your lymphatic system can be excised during the removal of a tumour and lymphedema can result. This health complication often occurs from patients undergoing treatment for breast cancer.
Lymphatic drainage massage can relieve the painful swelling that occurs from lymphedema. Pushing congested lymph from the swelling towards healthy lymph nodes promotes drainage – which results in pain relief and increased mobility for the patient.
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Your Team of Specialists at Mimico Medical
If you are suffering from lymphedema or any condition that is affecting the health of your lymphatic system, then get in touch with our physiotherapy team today. At Mimico Medical our trained physiotherapists work in dialogue with the clinic’s medical team to bring you the most effective treatment.
The underlying health conditions that cause swollen lymph nodes – such as cancer treatment – bring great challenges to patients and their families. Our physical therapy and medical teams have many years experience relieving the physical and emotional challenges that come with lymphatic complications. We look forward to becoming part of your team, helping you to reduce pain and increase mobility.