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The lymph system serves several important bodily functions including helping to maintain fluid balance, absorbing fatty acids, and supporting your immune system. There are several key components to the lymphatic system, including the lymph nodes, lymph vessels that transport the lymphatic fluid, and the lymphatic organs including the spleen, sinus, and tonsils. When the lymphatic system does not drain properly, it can result in lymphedema, or swelling of the arms or legs. A lymphatic drainage massage in Chelmsford can help relieve this condition and improve the function of your lymphatic system – please visit our MedSpa to learn more about how this wellness treatment can benefit you.

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Lymphatic drainage massage is a light and gentle massage on the lymphatic system which encourages lymph fluid to pass through the system and drain waste products. The massage combines pressure with pumping movements and is aimed at supporting the immune system and detoxifying the body. The massage helps reduce swelling and relieve pain that can occur when an individual develops lymphedema.

The symptoms of lymphedema can be mild, moderate, or severe, but when the swelling is significant, it can be painful and increase the risk of infection and open wounds. The areas that swell are typically the extremities: the arms, legs, and feet. Lymphedema changes your appearance and can be triggered by several health conditions. Primary lymphedema is a rare inherited condition that affects how your lymphatic system develops from birth. Secondary lymphedema can happen if the lymphatic system is damaged, including after a traumatic injury, surgery, or radiation therapy.



You may hear lymphatic drainage massage also called manual lymphatic drainage. When the lymphatic system is working correctly, fluid is collected and returned to the heart. From there, waste products are filtered by the kidneys and liver. When a trauma, surgery, or damage disrupts the lymphatic system, the fluid can collect in the legs and arms. Lymphatic drainage massage in our Chelmsford office is a specific type of massage that requires additional training to ease the swelling in the tissue.

The massage is a two-step process. First, the fluid trapped in the tissues is released. Then, lymph fluid is encouraged into the lymph nodes using light pumping action by the massage therapist. Women who have had surgery for breast cancer more commonly experience lymphedema after surgery, which may or may not resolve in time. Lymphatic drainage massage is also used to treat lymphedema that may occur in other medical conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, lipedema, and chronic venous insufficiency. Each of these medical conditions causes some damage or blockage to the lymphatic system.


Many people do not experience immediate results from lymphatic drainage massages. You may have to undergo several sessions before the lymphatic fluid begins draining. When working with a trained lymphatic drainage massage therapist, you can learn small techniques to help maintain the progress you make during your therapy sessions. Although you may notice improvements, there is no known cure for lymphedema. Patients in Chelmsford will notice that the swelling goes down with lymphatic drainage massage techniques but does not typically resolve completely. Without consistent massage, the swelling typically returns.

Your massage therapist may also recommend exercise, compression bandages, or sequential pneumatic compression sleeves to put alternating pressure on your arms or legs. Several types of massage techniques are commonly used, and the technique chosen for you depends on the location of the lymphedema and the underlying cause. Generally, lymphatic drainage massage is a safe treatment option but several medical conditions and circumstances contraindicate the treatment. For example, it moves lymph fluid back into the circulatory system, so those with a heart condition or kidney failure must be very careful about fluid overload. The massage is typically not recommended in these cases. Individuals who have a current infection should also not use lymphatic massage as it can spread the infection throughout the body. The same is true of people with active cancer. Before undergoing lymphatic drainage, they should consult with their oncologist as there is a potential risk of spreading cancer cells through the lymphatic system.


Lymphedema is a painful and sometimes disfiguring condition that can be helped using lymphatic drainage massage in Chelmsford. However, it requires a massage therapist, physical therapist, or physician trained in the techniques to ensure the procedure is done properly. If you experience the symptoms of lymphedema or have been diagnosed with the condition, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Dave Lee and discuss this unique treatment to help relieve your pain and discomfort.

Chelmsford Plastic Surgeon, Dr. David Lee

Your beauty is a symphony. Don’t trust it to anyone less than a true performer and a master at his craft. Boston and Chelmsford plastic surgeon, Dr. Dave Lee brings the virtuosity of a concert pianist and the artistry of a renowned plastic surgeon to each procedure. Schedule a consultation today to discover why patients across New England are singing the praises of Dr. Lee and his staff at PURE Cosmetic Center.

Boston: 400 Commonwealth Ave, 2nd Floor, Boston, MA 02215

Chelmsford: 15 Village Square, Chelmsford, MA 01824

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