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Post Surgery Lymphatic Massage

Information for Surgeons

Whether I am performing manual lymphatic drainage to reduce swelling after surgery or providing ongoing treatments for mobility and recovery, my focus is to keep the incision area safe!

Why is Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) important after surgery?

Manual Lymphatic Drainage can be a very effective part of post-surgery healing for facelift, tummy tuck, breast work, rhinoplasty, dental, orthopaedic or lipoedema clients.

When the lymph drifts out into surrounding tissue after a surgical procedure disrupts the normal lymphatic pathways, swelling is the result. There are ways to combat this problem which as a Dr Vodder therapist, I can work out an effective treatment plan in conjunction the medical teams post operative recovery plan.

MLD Protocols

I ensure client safety by following a strict protocol that includes:

  • No MLD directly over the scar until it is healed
  • Manual lymphatic drainage massage and low level last treatment utilised as part of the treatment protocols
  • Myofascia release and gentle techniques will be used on other parts of the body as needed in adjacent areas without movement of the sutured / affected area
  • The client is positioned on the table so as not to place body weight pressure on scars until healed with use of pillows and bolsters
  • Where there is bruising, I can apply medical kinesiology tape to help with the bruising recovery providing the skin is in safe condition to do so
  • *I am able to offer Scar Release Treatment after a minimum of 8 weeks after surgery, to keep the scar mobile

  • Clients will be advised to follow the medical teams prescribed post operative recovery information such as wearing compression and following exercise guidelines
  • Are your clients feeling anxious before their upcoming surgery?

  • Preparing for surgery can be a very stressful time, and stress has a negative effect on our immune system
  • Having manual lymphatic drainage prior to surgery helps calm the central nervous system and also readies the immune system for recovery
  • If your client can plan in two to three pre-surgery treatments then the recovery period is expected to be much reduced.
  • What is Manual Lymphatic Drainage massage?

  • Manual Lymphatic Drainage, also known as lymphatic massage and MLD, is a technique developed by Emil Vodder in the South of France over 100 years ago and brought to New Zealand and Australia by the International Vodder School
  • MLD massage uses light pressure and specific strokes to increase the flow of lymph in the body
  • This powerful but gentle technique is designed to detoxify the body of excess lymph fluid in patients with lymphoedema. It is also used to reroute lymphatic fluid and reduce swelling after surgery
  • For more information on MLD The Dr Vodder Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) Technique

    Credit on content to Kathleen Lissen CLT, CMT. To read her book on Plastic Surgery Recovery, order via this link