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Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD) is a very specialized, gentle type of medical-massage. It is part of your lymphedema treatment. The massage aims to encourage the lymph fluid to move away from the swollen area to drain normally. It also helps lymph fluid drain through the healthy lymph vessels to help control swelling.

Symptoms of lymphedema include:

  • Pain

  • Skin discoloration

  • Tissue swelling

  • Heaviness in the limbs

  • Weakness

  • Hardening or thickening of the skin

  • Recurring infections


Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD), is a gentle massage used to relieve painful swelling in your arms and legs caused by lymphedema. Lymphedema often affects people recovering from breast cancer surgery. Other conditions that benefit from MLD are:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis: It is ongoing arthritis in the joints; that causes joint pain, swelling, and stiffness.

  • Fibromyalgia: This condition causes chronic muscle and joint pain.

  • Chronic venous insufficiency: This happens when your leg veins aren't working effectively, making it hard for your blood to return to your heart from your legs.

  • Lipedema: This happens when excess fat accumulates in your lower body, blocking your lymphatic pathway and causing lymphedema.

  • A massage therapist uses MLD techniques to stimulate lymph nodes and increase rhythmic contractions of the lymphatic system to enhance their activity so that stagnant lymphatic fluid can be rerouted, which eases the swelling in your tissues.

Patients experiencing the below conditions are discouraged from this type of massage unless they have a Dr’s note allowing them to get this type of massage.

  • You have a heart condition.

  • You have kidney failure.

  • You have blood clots.

  • You have an infection.

Talk to your healthcare provider if you're concerned your physical health might be affected by a Manual Lymph Drainage massage (MLD).


Lymphedema is manageable with tight compression bandages or stockings, but an MLD can help enhance the benefits.

Studies have found that MLD may be beneficial for the following:

Rheumatoid arthritis. If you have rheumatoid arthritis, you may experience poor lymph flow as the disease progresses. Along with tissue swelling, pain in the joints increases, joints lose their function and the skin changes color. MLD can help ease these later-stage rheumatoid arthritis symptoms.

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). Chronic venous insufficiency is when the valves or walls of the veins in the legs don't work correctly. It makes it hard for the blood to flow back to the heart from the legs.‌ MLD can help increase the speed of blood flow in people with CVI.

The massage can make the femoral artery (the large artery in the thigh) perform better immediately after the session. It's unclear how long this impact lasts or whether the massage provides long-term relief from pain and swelling. Further research in this area would help bring more light to the effectiveness of this massage technique on CVI. Check with your doctor before having MLD done.

Fibromyalgia. MLD may help people with fibromyalgia.  This condition causes inflammation of the skin nerves, tissue swelling, and skin discoloration.  MLD can be utilized in addition to general tissue massage in treating depression, stiffness of muscles, and improving the quality of life for those living with fibromyalgia.

Non Member Pricing
  • 90 Min. Lymphedema Massage


Member Pricing

90 Min. Massage  |  $150/Mo          

Savings  |  $25/Mo.

  • 1 – 90 Min. Lymphedema massage per month

  • Save 15% on 2 additional massages each month

  • Save 10% on all Aline in-store products

  • Roll-over unused massage session for 1 Mo