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Manual Lymphatic Drainage (Post Cancer / Lymphedema)

What Is Lymphedema?

According to the National Lymphedema Network, lymphedema is an abnormal collection of high-protein fluid just beneath the skin. This swelling, or edema, occurs most commonly in the arm or leg, but it also may occur in other parts of the body including the breast or trunk, head and neck, or genitals. Lymphedema usually develops when lymph vessels are damaged or lymph nodes are removed (secondary lymphedema) but can also be present when lymphatic vessels are missing or impaired due to a hereditary condition (primary lymphedema).

Lymphatic fluid is normally transported out of a region of the body by an extensive network of lymph vessels. When the collection of protein-rich fluid persists in a specific area, it can attract more fluid and thus worsen the swelling. In addition to increased fluid in the area, the body experiences an inflammatory reaction resulting in scar tissue called fibrosis in the affected area. The presence of fibrosis makes it even more difficult for the excess fluid to be eliminated from the area. As a result, the increased fluid and fibrosis prevents the delivery of oxygen and essential nutrients to the area, which in turn can delay wound healing, provide a culture medium for bacteria to grow, and increase the risk of infections in or below the skin called cellulitis or lymphangitis (discussed later under Infections and Other Complications).

Lymphedema should not be confused with other types of edema resulting from venous insufficiency (leaky or obstructed veins), cardiac conditions like heart failure or sleep apnea, kidney failure, or other inflammatory processes. These conditions are not lymphedema and are generally treated differently.

Manual Lymphatic Drainage -Post Cancer - Lymphedema-orlando

What is lymphatic drainage?

Lymphatic Drainage is a manual therapy conformed by light strokes in the surface of the skin in direction of the structure of the lymphatic system. This technique will unblock the lymph nodes, and pump your lymphatic system to naturally drain the accumulation of lymphatic fluid that is creating the inflammation or edema. This massage like technique is gentle and not painful.

Common causes of lymphedema?

Lymphedema normally occurs after the removal or damage of lymph nodes in a specific area, for example after a mastectomy, melanoma, Colon, prostate or bladder cancer. The lymph nodes may also be damaged by an infection, radiation treatment, or trauma.
Lymphedema can also be present from birth, abnormalities in the lymphatic system from birth and it creates swelling in multiple limbs and body regions. It can develop at puberty and adulthood.

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Testimonials

I had surgery over a month ago and I started getting my massages with Iliana at Heaven on Earth. The way my body has changed is amazing. She’s very talented and her techniques are unique. You will love it!

I’m truly blessed to have found Heaven on Earth Wellness, and have been in the care of Iliana as of July of 2013 . I was referred to them by a friend who recently had elective surgery and had multiples lymphatic massages on the treated areas. I was very pleased with the package deals, the comfortable and relaxing environment, the knowledge of my massage therapist Iliana and overall the service provided to me.

Iliana has treated me two times and I have four more treatments remaining. Her hands are truly magic and I feel so much better. Not to mention both Iliana and Paola are super sweet and attentive. Please do not just trust anyone who says they specialize lymphatic massage…just go see Iliana and you will be so grateful you did!!

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