The Lymphatic System & Manual Lymphatic Drainage

The Lymphatic System

The lymphatic system is a network of tissues and organs that help rid the body of cellular waste. The primary function of the lymphatic system is to transport lymph, a fluid containing infection-fighting white blood cells, throughout the body.

The lymphatic system primarily consists of lymphatic vessels, which are similar to the circulatory system’s veins and capillaries. The vessels are connected to lymph nodes, where the lymph is filtered. The tonsils, adenoids, spleen and thymus are all part of the lymphatic system, however it is the lymphatic vessels and superficial nodal system such as nodes in the axilla (arm pit) and femoral (groin) regions that we are able to aid through Manual Lymphatic Drainage.


Why & When?

Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) is  a treatment style to be used when the body’s own lymphatic system is compromised. Most commonly, MLD can be utilised to move stubborn swelling and fluid build up when:

– Recovering from surgery or injury where

there is large volume of swelling

– Lymphoedema (Primary & Secondary)

– Lymph system dysfunction (eg. lymph node removal)

– Infection recovery (eg. sinusitis)



MLD is a type of gentle massage that aims to assist the lymph system in the drainage of lymph – the fluid that carries waste products away from your tissue for processing. MLD uses a rhythmic circular or pump-like movements to stimulate lymph flow.




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