Liposuction is a surgical procedure that usually creates pooling of excess lymphatic fluids. This results in swelling and discomfort for the patient.
Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) is a specialized massage technique that is recommended by plastic surgeons, after liposuction, to accelerate the recuperation period.
The science behind why this massage works is fairly simple. Stroking the areas of the body that process the lymph fluid, and the lymph nodes, causes the fluid to drain.
This massage procedure works well and has been demonstrated to show positive results after only a couple of treatments! However, most patients need 4 to 6 treatments to remove most of the excess fluid. Patients can expect noticeable relief from swelling after the 6th treatment.
Some patients will experience lumpiness in the areas affected by liposuction. This is normal for most patients after surgery. The lumpiness is caused by inflammation and trauma from the surgical instrument used under the skin to extract the fatty tissue. The tunnels and channels created by the surgical instrument fill with fluid and become swollen with fluid and left-over fat. This fluid and left-over fat tends to begin to harden between one week and three weeks after surgery. MLD will help move the fluid by gently pushing it back into the lymph passages.
Doctors may advise their patients that, without MLD, there is a risk that the swelling and inflammation could turn into fibrosis, which is a permanent hardening of the area. MLD ensures you’ll achieve the best results possible from the surgery.
Every patient is different, however, most doctors advise their patients to begin their MLD treatment the 4th or 5th day after surgery to obtain the best, and fastest, results.
A professional MLD massage therapist will know exactly what to do. He/she will massage in the right place and with the right amount of pressure.
Self-Lymphatic-Massage and dry brushing can be performed at home to continue the work done in the massage office. Ask your therapist to show you how you can best help yourself at home.