Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) is specialist type of skin massage designed to improve the function of the lymphatic system.

There are different types of MLD including Vodder, Földi, Casley-Smith and Fluoroscopy guided manual lymphatic drainage (FG-MLD).

The aim of MLD is to move fluid from the swollen area into a place where the lymphatic system is working normally, where it can be drained.  This is achieved by gentle rhythmical movements of the skin which stimulates the contraction of the lymphatic vessels.

A Lymphoedema Specialist ​can also teach Simple Lymphatic Drainage (SLD) which is an easier version of MLD that patients can do themselves.

After MLD multi-layered lymphoedema bandaging (MLLB) or compression garments such as sleeves, gloves, stockings or tights may be fitted over affected limbs.  This stimulates more effective lymph drainage. The combination of exercise and compression encourages the fluid to move out of the affected limb. 

During any course of treatment, instruction and advice on self-care and management of your condition will be provided and regular checks will be maintained on how well treatment is working.

Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
British Lymphology Society
Manual Lymphatic Drainage MLD UK
Health & Care Professions Counci

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