Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) Treatment UPDATE: Direction of MLD Strokes

Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) Treatment UPDATE:  Direction of MLD Strokes

For years, we have taught our MLD stretching, stroking and v-flushing strokes to be applied in retrograde, from distal to proximal on the arms and legs.  Some of our students questioned this because of training they received elsewhere, where they were trained that taught all MLD strokes are to be applied from proximal to distal which is different than how we teach at CE Institute LLC. 

We allow students to apply MLD strokes in whichever direction they feel is appropriate, whether it be distal to proximal or proximal to distal, as long as they are working towards the regional nodes of the area.  And we will continue our distal to proximal MLD strokes because of the recent published science that supports this successful retrograde practice:

In the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Publishing: September 2021 - Volume 148 - Issue 3 - p 425e-436e doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000008252, there was an article published called:  Retrograde Manual Lymphatic Drainage following Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer to Distal Recipient Sites for Extremity Lymphedema: A Retrospective Study and Literature Review

In this article, they stated that after a vascularized node transfer procedure:  "standard retrograde manual lymphatic drainage significantly improved circumferential reduction rates and Lymphedema-Specific Quality-of-Life Questionnaire scores."

We have found this and so much more research to build supportsour MLD teachings and practice.  We said we'd post updates for our training on our social media whenever possible, as new information develops.  This information was only published a couple months ago, and we hope you enjoy the knowledge that working distally to proximally with MLD strokes can be effective!  To learn about this and more, please register for one of our MLD classes at:

Past CE Institute LLC MLD students!  Make sure you are following us on social media and check your emails for refresher classes and dates that are periodically sent, when available!

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