Manual Lymphatic Drainage

Observation during extensive hands on classroom training, for individuals not exhibiting symptoms benefiting from Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) it is at best, merely a slightly relaxing experience. I have come to learn, however, that for those exhibiting symptoms it is very powerful. This is an account of the first MLD treatment I performed on a patient.

A 66 year old self-employed, academic female presents complaining of constant headache over the last four months...she has been “eating” Panadol. She also appears to be suffering from a cold. Not being aware of the full extent of other symptoms and at the patient’s request, remedial massage treatment for upper back, shoulder and neck tightness is commenced.

Three consecutive weekly treatments had absolutely no affect. Still eating Panadol. Four weeks have now passed and I notice she still had the same cold when she first attended clinic. I mention the cold should have cleared up by now. "What's going on?" I ask..."Oh" she says, "I've had constant coughs, colds and allergy reactions for over a year now."

“I'm no expert but they taught me in massage school (Swinburne Uni) that's a sign of a compromised immune system and MLD can help.” She is sceptical about the benefit of MLD but agrees to undergo a treatment which we proceed to do.

MLD is a treatment for draining fluid from the interstitial spaces of the body and accelerates flow through the lymphatic system by up to 50 times the normal rate. It is estimated the lymphatic system collects, treats and drains 2 litres of fluids daily. Hypothetically, a 90 minute MLD session could drain 6 litres of lymphatic fluid. It is normal for treatment to be interrupted at the halfway mark because the patient’s bladder is full.

She later advises that on the evening following MLD treatment, all symptoms disappeared. Runny nose, coughs, allergy symptoms and headaches all gone.  Complete amazement. Condition resolved entirely. One week later she is still clear of all symptoms.

It was only then she told me that when first presenting for Remedial Massage treatment, she also visited her GP for a diagnosis of the condition. The result of the examination...there was no cause for the headaches, they were psychosomatic and she should visit a psychiatrist. 

Refusing to accept this she insisted on a referral for a second opinion. For a fee of $700, examination and testing by a Specialist, it was concluded there was no physical reason for the headaches, they were psychosomatic and she should visit a psychiatrist.

Meanwhile, the humble massage therapist notices she is actually not a very well individual and proposes treatment to boost immunity. Complete fluke but just going by the training. Response to treatment totally beyond expectation. I can only surmise her lymphatic system was blocked and sluggish, the MLD treatment clearing and revitalising lymphatics, detoxifying her tissues, eliminated her symptoms. A second MLD treatment was carried out. The patient has not required treatment since.

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