Lymphatic Massage

Lymphatic massage, or lymphatic drainage massage, is a form of massage therapy used specifically to relieve discomfort and pain caused by lymph accumulating in certain areas of the body. Multiple sessions are usually required to address the issue.


Lymph is the clear fluid that surrounds the body’s tissues and contains white blood cells (that fight infections) and chyle (intestinal fluid made of proteins and fats).


It circulates throughout the body. Issues with lymph drainage can cause it to collect in a particular body part, most commonly the arms and legs, and produce painful swelling known as lymphedema.

What Happens During A Lymphatic Massage

During lymphatic massage, the therapist uses rhythmic techniques to move stagnant lymph from your tissues to your lymph nodes, which reduces the swelling. The massage also helps improve blood circulation.


The skin is stretched in different directions using the hands to produce variations in pressure without using oils. Only gentle pressure is applied. Slow repetitive movements are used with a resting phase in between to allow the skin to return to normal.


These movements are combined with a deep breathing technique known as diaphragmatic breathing to help open the deep lymphatic pathways.

There are two main processes involved in a lymphatic drainage massage:


1. Clearing: Releasing the lymphatic fluid in your tissues to create a vacuum which would allow more fluid to flow through


2. Reabsorption: Moving your lymphatic fluid to your lymph nodes for drainage
Four main strokes are involved in a lymphatic massage:


● Stationary circles

● Scoop technique

● Pump technique

● Rotary technique


Clearing involves:
● supraclavicular lymph area: under the collarbone
● axillary lymph area: under the arms
● inside of the elbows
These movements are repeated multiple times until the swelling starts to go down.


In this step, the massage therapist uses gentle, sweeping movements with light pressure to shift the surface of the skin, and massage the fluid from one part to another till it reaches the lymph nodes.
Lymphatic massage is not for everyone. It is contraindicated if a person has:
● congestive heart failure
● history of blood clots or stroke
● infection of any sort
● liver problems
● kidney problems