The Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) method, developed by Dr. Emil Vodder in the early 1930, is a gentle circular massage which is carried out with precise, rhythmic movements exerting different intensities of pressure. The result of this method is an increase in the transporting volume of the lymph collecting vessels. The “additional circular- pumping and cupping” motions aim to transport the lymphatic oedema fluid to the centre.
MLD treats the whole body, not only the affected parts. The massage starts in the neck area where the big lymph vessels join the clavicular vein. This should stimulate a central lymphatic flow to enable the drainage from other parts of the body. Afterwards the trunk and extremities are treated.
The therapist tries to increase the transport of the liquid by special pumping techniques in order to reduce the oedema. MLD should never be the only decongestive therapy, but should always be combined with other compression methods (compression bandaging, medical compression garments). In case of acute inflammation, thrombosis, tumor spread in the lymph vessels near the skin and cardiac oedema (oedema resulting from congestive heart failure), MLD should not be used.
Additional bandaging or the wearing of compression garments, supports MLD and a renewed collection of liquid in the tissue is avoided. With this therapy acute or chronic lymphoedema, lipoedema and idiopathic oedema can be treated.
The intermittent compression with pumps
This method, as well as bandaging and compression garments, has been a standard practice in the physical treatment of mostly venous diseases, and to a lesser extent also of lymphatic diseases. The compression using pumps is able to reduce the volume of oedema. Nevertheless, it is not totally clear how it works. Experimental studies have not produced definite results. The multi-chambered intermittent pneumatic pump compression should only be used as a support in the second phase of the complex decongestive therapy (CDT) to maintain the therapeutic success. Without combining a consequently followed course of CDT the results have not been convincing.
The Földi College
Lymphoedema is an independent, chronic disease of the skin, the subcutaneous tissue and the inner organs. A diseased lymph vessel system is unable to fulfill the task of volumetric regulation and homeostasis. Protein-rich fluid accumulates in the tissue and leads to changes in the basic substance, the cell population and to increased formation of fibres. Untreated lymphoedema will always progress. Lymphoedema may occur in all regions of the body, but it is the limbs that are most commonly affected. www.foeldicollege.com/
Dr. Vodder Akademie
The Dr. Vodder Academy was founded 1971 and since that time we teach the original method in Manual Lymphdrainage. More than 50 teachers worldwide running the 4 week-classes, from America till New Zealand. The courses cover various pathologies (e. g. stroke, CRPS, traumatas, wishplash and of course lymphedema). Theoretical instruction is given by a physician expert in the field. Bandaging and specific MLD treatments are taught. At the end of the course, students take a written and practical exam to demonstrate competence in techniques, treatment and bandaging. Students who successfully complete the examinations may then describe themselves as Vodder-Certified MLD Therapists. . http://www.vodderakademie.com/home.html All certified students are listed for 2 years on our therapist – list, so that patients can find easlily a competent therapist close to their residence.
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