Jan 31, 2008

Lymphadema and Massage Information

Here is some information from the "At Your Service" section of the Times-Mail News out of Indiana.

(The lymphland link has a quicktime file when opening, which some browsers have trouble with, just wanted to give you a heads up on that)

Lymphedema data

COMMENT — My husband has lymphedema and I have done much research on the subject and one thing I can say is that going to a traditional massage therapist with no training in lymphedema therapy, manual lymphatic drainage (MLD) or complete decongestive therapy (CDT) can result in a worsening of the condition. So, I urge you to please find a certified lymphedema therapist.

A few ways to find a certified lymphedema therapist is to ask your physician, call your hospital or visit www.UnitedPhysicalTherapy.com. Good luck to you. N.B., an Internet reader.

COMMENT — Dear D.B. and Barbie, although regular massage feels good and can help move lymph fluid in some ways, there are precautions needing attention here. A soft touch Swedish massage would not hurt lymphedema but any hard type of massage such as rolfing, trigger point, Alexander technique could damage nodes and bring on a cellulitis attack.

What the reader needs is a certified, qualified lymphedema therapist to perform complete/combined decongestive therapy. It feels like a massage but it’s very specific bodywork to move lymph fluids out of the body. Sincerely, Tina Budde, www.lymphland.com.

ANSWER — Thanks to both of you for the heads up. After a little more checking, I discovered that lymphedema does require a different type of massage, ordered by a physician. So, D.B., of Bedford, or others who may be experiencing complications from lymphedema, speak with your physician about massage therapy or other possible relief treatments.

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