What is Lymphatic Drainage | Types | Conditions | Benefits

Wondering what is lymphatic drainage? Do you know the lymphatic system is pivotal in activating your immunity? It consists of lymph nodes that contain particular cells to trigger the immune response whenever a foreign particle invades your body. Additionally, your lymphatic system comprises fluid called lymph that removes toxins from your metabolism. 

Lymphatic drainage is a massage technique that helps drain lymph nodes into circulation and facilitate the movement of lymph within your tissues. It relieves swelling and pain related to lymphedema. 

Read more to understand more about what is lymphatic drainage and what are its indications. 

What is Lymphatic Drainage Massage?

Lymphatic drainage is a medicinal massage to treat symptoms of lymphedema. However, lymphedema is a fairly common sign that presents whenever you go through an episode of chronic illness or undergo a surgical procedure. This condition is also characterized by fluid accumulation in various body regions. It happens due to the inability of your lymphatic system to drain fluid because of blocked lymph nodules.

That’s why lymph drainage massage focuses on correcting fluid flow within your tissues. It also reduces swelling (lymphedema) by releasing the lymph into its ducts. 

Types of Lymphatic Drainage Massage

Once you’ve understood what is lymphatic drainage, the next step is to find out its types. So, two types of lymphatic drainage include:

  • Manual Lymphatic Drainage – It’s a form of therapeutic massage that a qualified physical therapist can perform.
  • Simple Lymphatic Drainage – It’s a simplified form of lymph drainage that you can efficiently perform at your home.

If you’re keen to learn simple lymphatic drainage techniques, you must know which body region is required to undergo massage and how much pressure it takes to drain lymphatic fluid.

How Does Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage Work?

The process of manual lymphatic drainage is focused on using light and gentle strokes to swollen body parts to circulate the lymph. For instance, if you have swollen hands, a therapist will apply light and circular motion on your affected area and move the lymph towards the torso to drain the excess fluid into its circulation. 

Conditions where Manual Lymphatic Drainage is Required

Once you’ve learned what is lymphatic drainage and its types, you must learn about its indications. 

You may have to undergo manual lymphatic drainage if you’re suffering from conditions that cause lymphedema. Medical conditions where lymphedema is a standard clinical feature include:


Having a mastectomy or breast cancer surgery increases your risk of developing swelling. While mastectomy removes cancerous cells from your breast, it also takes away lymph nodes present under your arms. Moreover, breast cancer surgery can damage your lymph vessels, lead to lymphedema, and require you to take manual lymphatic drainage massage. 

Pelvic Surgery

If you have had pelvic surgery to cure diseases affecting your pelvis and nearby organs, you’re more likely to have your pelvic lymph nodes removed. It leads to lymphedema that can be managed by taking lymphatic drainage. 

Radiotherapy or Chemotherapy

Radiotherapy or chemotherapy are among the most preferable methods to cure cancer non-surgically. Both treatments are effective when restricting the growth of cancerous cells. However, radiotherapy or chemotherapy results in damaged lymph nodes and inflamed skin. It leads to an abnormal lymphatic circulating system that can be corrected by getting lymphatic drainage massages. 

Cardiac Disorders

If you are suffering from cardiac disorders, including congestive heart failure, you are at a higher risk of developing lymphedema. Your lymphatic nodes bring back fluid in your heart. But if your heart isn’t functioning well, your lymph may accumulate in your legs and get swollen. To reduce this swelling, you should undergo lymphatic drainage. 

Incompetent Blood Vessels

Your blood vessels carry a significant portion of lymph throughout the body. When your blood vessels are incompetent, they cannot drain lymph into circulation and instigate lymphedema. You must undertake lymphatic drainage to deal with swelling predisposed by the affected vascular system.

Renal Dysfunction

Your kidney helps to excrete excess lymph and toxins from your body. If you have renal dysfunction, your kidneys are unable to remove fluid. Excess lymph can collect in your limbs and cause swelling that can be corrected by getting manual lymphatic drainage massages. 


Your lymphatic system consists of vessels that lie below your skin. That’s why trauma to any part of your body may trigger damage to lymphatic vessels and develop swelling. To reduce lymphedema, it may be helpful. 


Your lymphatic system tends to show immune responses whenever your body gets infections. It also contains white blood cells to fight against infectious diseases. The accumulation of lymphatic fluid in your body depends upon your immune responses associated with infections. To deal with this swelling, you have to take lymphatic drainage massage.


If you are obese, you’re at higher risk of getting swelling. Obese people have an excess accumulation of adipose tissues that may put their lymph nodes and vessels under stress. To release an additional amount of fluid, you have to undergo lymphatic drainage. 

Physical Inactivity

Lack of physical activity predisposes you to develop swelling. Your leg muscles are pivotal in circulating your lymph around your body. If you’re not physically active, your lymph stays within your legs, and they become swollen. To reduce this swelling, lymphatic drainage massage is the treatment of choice. 


Tumors are the masses of tissues that result from abnormal cell growth that can be cancerous or non-cancerous. However, these tumors can put pressure on your arterial and venous supply, including the lymphatic system. It leads to swollen and painful limbs. To correct the swelling caused by tumors, you should get a full-body lymphatic drainage massage. 

Benefits of Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage

Manual lymphatic drainage massages aim to protect your body against numerous medical complications and serve the following health advantages:

  • Provides a stronger immune system
  • Corrects insufficient kidney function
  • Reduces stress, anxiety, and fatigue
  • Treats swelling within your limbs
  • Gives glowing and unblemished skin

Bottom Line

At MOCEAN Wellness Center in NYC, we offer effective lymphatic drainage massages. Our experienced therapist will guide you about what is lymphatic drainage and its benefits before starting the procedure.

We are well-equipped with the latest wellness technologies that enable you to relax your mind, body, and soul with 60-minute sessions. Also, we provide red light therapy, salt room, and sound therapy to reduce your anxiety levels.

Where To Find Effective Full Body Lymphatic Drainage Massages in NYC?

Lymphatic drainage massages are the treatment of choice for excess fluid accumulation, resulting in swelling and painful limbs. That’s why, to rule out the signs of lymphedema, you must seek an expert medical opinion to undergo manual lymphatic drainage.

Book an appointment at our longevity center in NYC by contacting us right away. 

Then we create a health plan tailored to your needs.

Based on the results, we develop a personalized treatment plan for each individual to promote optimal health. With 1-on-1 consultations, cutting-edge technology, and a team of experts who care about getting you better, MOCEAN offers you a comprehensive road map on how to become the healthiest version of yourself.