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Lymphatic drainage

Lymphatic draining is a manual massage technique that stimulates the lymph and interstitial fluid flow in the body.

Lymphatic draining is a manual massage technique that stimulates the lymph and interstitial fluid flow in the body. This method consists of gentle motions made with fingers and palms of the hands on the whole body. Those motions are made in the direction of the lymphatic flow to create a pumping effect by a change in the exert pressure. This method is often combined with pressotherapy equipment, which allows different pressure points to be exerted at the same time.

Lymph flows through lymphatic vessels and the lymph nodes, which filters waste produced by the human body. Unlike the blood system, the lymphatic network isn’t activated by the heart, so it must rely on the breathing and body movements to eliminate waste and toxins from the body.

The interstitial liquid is the clear liquid that occupies the space between blood cells and capillaries. It provides nutriments to the cells and releases them from their waste.

There are two lymphatic draining methods which are the Leduc lymphatic draining and the Vodder lymphatic draining. Although different on some aspects, the two methods share the major parts of the maneuvers that constitute the care. This method is mainly used for aesthetics care such as preventing stretch marks and cellulite, as well as to promote wound healing following a surgery.

Lymphatic drainage Réseau des massothérapeutes


Having excess weight and a lack of muscle activity can interfere with the lymph flow and could lead to weakening the body. Swollen limbs, heaviness in legs, cellulite, stretch marks, etc. are effects of bad lymphatic flow. Lymphatic draining is therefore used to stimulate a deficient lymphatic flow in order to reduce these unwanted effects.


Lymphatic drainage is a technique that can be performed as a comprehensive care or be part of the techniques used by the therapist during his care. The movements are usually slow and soft and vary according to the method used, that is Vodder or Leduc. It is performed on the body with oil or massage gel in the same way as a massage on a massage table.


The contraindications to lymphatic drainage are the same as for most techniques: fever, infection, wounds or skin problems and history of heart problems. Precautions should be taken in the case of a person with cancer, asthma, renal failure, hyperthyroidism, low blood pressure, phlebitis, large painful varicose veins, abdominal surgery or inflammation in the acute phase.

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