Swollen Legs & Lymphatic Drainage
A number of different conditions predispose to retention of fluid in the tissues, producing puffy swollen ankles, feet and legs, as well at times in the arms. Fluid that surrounds the cells of the body can build up for a number of reasons.
It is cleared by the very efficient lymphatic channels that run in association with the veins and arteries. They rely on the muscular action of the limbs to push, and the suction effect of deep breathing in the chest to draw upwards, the fluid through the channels and back into the circulation near the heart.
The lymphatic channels also have their own natural slow beating action to improve the fluid movement.
- Hormonal changes can affect the accumulation of fluid.
- Abdominal, groin, pelvic, axillary and breast surgery (mastectomy) - by producing scarring and transecting lymphatic channels - and even constipation can interfere with free lymphatic channel drainage.
- Prolonged standing and tight clothing will also impede it.
- Any damage to the tissues of and just under the skin from trauma (again producing scarring) and weight gain will impair lymphatic flow.
- Varicose veins increase the fluid load that needs to be cleared by the lymphatic system.
- Ideopathic or primary lymphoedema where the cause is not known and probably relates to genetic tendencies and a deficient network of channels. The problem can declare itself after a minor injury or immobility with the occurrence of local swelling.
Obviously to treat the veins that are related to the problem would be a first consideration.
It is possible to restore a great deal of the normal function of the lymphatic through the unique action of the Endermologie® Cellu M6 Integral machine (sometimes with infra-red wraps). This can be dramatically enhanced by the PR777 Gallium Arsenide therapeutic laser.
There is the need for proper use of limb muscles through regular exercise as well as good breathing patterns, a high roughage diet and sufficient fluid intake to maintain normal lymphatic function.