Advanced Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage after Surgery
The lymphatic system is one of the body’s unsung heroes, working quietly behind the scenes to help flush out toxins, regenerate healthy tissue, and maintain a healthy immune system. When the lymphatic system is not working properly—if the body is stressed, fatigued, fighting infection or disease, or recovering from a surgical procedure, for instance—lymphatic fluids can build up, causing uncomfortable swelling and ultimately inhibit the restoration of full health. Advanced Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage is a gentle yet powerful massage technique designed to speed healing by releasing lymphatic fluid that has been improperly blocked due to a problem in the lymphatic system.
When is Advanced Manual Lymphatic Drainage Appropriate?
Many common surgical procedures can result in disruptions to the lymphatic system, resulting in post-surgical swelling that can undermine a speedy and healthy recovery. In some cases, lymphedema (an obstructed lymphatic system leading to edema, or swelling) occurs because the surgery required removing lymph nodes responsible for stimulating the flow of lymphatic fluid; this is especially common in mastectomy patients. Many cosmetic procedures can significantly disrupt the lymphatic system even when adjacent lymph nodes aren’t removed.
Advanced Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage can, therefore, be a critical element of the healing process after many surgical procedures, but is especially recommended after:
- Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck)
- Liposuction and Smart-Lipo
- Brazilian Butt Lift and other fat transfer procedures
- Rhinoplasty (a “nose job”)
- Facelift procedures
Cosmetic procedures in the face and abdomen are especially vulnerable to post-surgical swelling and bruising because the tools and techniques of these specific procedures significantly disrupt the natural pathways usually utilized by lymphatic fluid. Post-surgical MLD massage helps stimulate and maintain the proper flow of lymph fluid in these areas during the healing process.
Benefits of Post-Surgical Manual Lymphatic Drainage
There are numerous benefits of this gentle massage technique. For instance, Advanced MLD can:
- Significantly reduce post-surgical swelling and bruising;
- Relieve pain and discomfort;
- Boost the immune system to help fight post-surgical infection;
- Minimize the formation of scar tissue;
- Relax the sympathetic nervous system to reduce stress;
- And overall, improve the healthy functioning of the lymphatic system to speed the recovery process.
Indeed, advanced MLD massage is so effective that many surgeons prescribe it as an integral part of the post-surgical recovery regime in order to help ensure that the surgical procedure has the best possible long-term results.
Your Advanced Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage Treatment
The success of post-surgical advanced manual lymphatic drainage massage lies in its gentleness. Most experts believe that heat and deep massage are counterproductive in a post-surgical setting; thus, it is important that you NOT substitute deep tissue massage, Swedish massage, or other massage technique for this advanced treatment. Your specific treatment plan—including when to begin advanced MLD and how frequently you should receive treatments—will depend on the surgical procedure you had and your unique state of health.
Post-surgical MLD is an advanced technique requiring specialized training, and should only be performed by a licensed massage therapist. If you have had—or if you are planning to have—a mastectomy or a cosmetic procedure such as a facelift or liposuction, contact Tampa Massage Clinic to discuss how we can help incorporate advanced manual lymphatic drainage massage with one of our highly-trained and fully licensed massage therapists, into your pre- and post-surgical routine.