10 Ways to Improve Your Lymphatic System Function

Gross Anatomy

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Histology of the stomach, Layers of the stomach. For example, the follicles expand significantly when encountering a foreign antigen. Structure of a typical neuron, Parts of a motor neuron. Skull, Right lateral view. Mature lymphocytes recirculate between the blood and the peripheral lymphoid organs until they encounter their specific antigen. Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma are the 2 major categories of lymphoma, characterized by enlargement of lymph nodes, usually present in the neck.

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How to Perform Lymphatic Drainage Massage

The main areas are the palatine tonsils on the sides of the oropharynx , the pharyngeal tonsils on the roof of the nasopharynx; also known as adenoids , and the lingual tonsils on the base of the posterior surface of the tongue.

Because these tonsils are so closely related to the oral and pharyngeal airways, they may interfere with breathing when they become enlarged. The predominance of lymphocytes and macrophages in these tonsillar tissues offers protection against harmful pathogens and substances that may enter through the oral cavity or airway.

Diseases of the lymphatic system include lymphedema, lymphoma, lymphadenopathy, lymphadenitis, filariasis, splenomegaly, and tonsillitis. Lymphedema results when the lymphatic system cannot adequately drain lymph, resulting in an accumulation of fluid that causes swelling.

It may be either primary or secondary. Primary lymphedema is an inherited condition that occurs as a result of impaired or missing lymphatic vessels; it may be present at birth, may develop with the onset of puberty, or may occur in adulthood, with no apparent causes. Secondary lymphedema is basically acquired regional lymphatic insufficiency, which may occur as a consequence of any trauma, infection, or surgical procedure that disrupts the lymphatic vessels or results in the loss of lymph nodes [ 8 ].

Treatment consists of compression bandages or pneumatic stockings to alleviate the swelling after appropriate diagnosis is made. Lymphoma is a medical term used for a group of cancers that originate in the lymphatic system.

Lymphomas usually begin with malignant transformation of the lymphocytes in lymph nodes or bunches of lymphatic tissue in organs like the stomach or intestines.

Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma are the 2 major categories of lymphoma, characterized by enlargement of lymph nodes, usually present in the neck. Symptoms of lymphoma include chronic fatigue, weak immune function, weight loss, and night sweats. Lymphadenopathy is a lymphatic disorder in which the lymph nodes become swollen or enlarged as a consequence of an infection. For example, swollen lymph nodes in the neck may occur as a result of a throat infection or sinus infection.

Lymphadenitis is an inflammation of the lymph node that is due to a bacterial infection of the tissue in the node, which causes swelling, reddening, and tenderness of the skin overlying the lymph node. Filariasis is a lymphatic system disorder that results from a parasitic infection that causes lymphatic insufficiency. Splenomegaly , or enlarged spleen, is a lymphatic system disorder that develops as a result of a viral infection, such as mononucleosis.

Tonsillitis is caused by an infection of the tonsils the lymphoid tissues present in the back of the oral cavity. The tonsils help filter out bacteria; when infected, they become swollen and inflamed, leading to sore throat, fever, and difficulty and pain while swallowing. Alcamo E, Krumhardt B. Marieb E, Hoehn K. Diseases of the Lymphatic system- Diagnosis and Therapy.

Saunders WH, Wakely P. Anatomy and physiology of the thoracic lymphatic system. Surgical prevention and treatment of lymphedema after lymph node dissection in patients with cutaneous melanoma.

The unique biology of lymphatic edema. Serve d as a speaker or a member of a speakers bureau for: Sign Up It's Free! If you log out, you will be required to enter your username and password the next time you visit. Share Email Print Feedback Close. Sections Lymphatic System Anatomy. Overview The lymphatic system parallels the cardiovascular system see the images below.

Lymph nodes and vessels, anterior view. Lymphatic system, anterior view. Organs that contain lymphoid tissue eg, lymph nodes, spleen, and thymus. Organ Function Lymph Contains nutrients, oxygen, hormones, and fatty acids, as well as toxins and cellular waste products, that are transported to and from cellular tissues Lymphatic vessels Transport lymph from peripheral tissues to the veins of the cardiovascular system Lymph nodes Monitors the composition of lymph, the location of pathogen engulfment and eradication, the immunologic response, and the regulation site Spleen Monitors the composition of blood components, the location of pathogen engulfment and eradication, the immunologic response, and the regulation site Thymus Serves as the site of T-lymphocyte maturation, development, and control.

Restoration of excess interstitial fluid and proteins to the blood. Gross Anatomy Lymph Lymph is a fluid derived from blood plasma. Lymph capillaries in spaces. Blind-ended lymphatic capillaries arise within interstitial spaces of cells near arterioles and venules. Lymph drainage flow; lymphatic duct anatomy. It contains T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes for immunologic response.

Other Considerations Diseases of the lymphatic system include lymphedema, lymphoma, lymphadenopathy, lymphadenitis, filariasis, splenomegaly, and tonsillitis. Anatomy of Lymphatic system. Key Components of Lymphatic System. What would you like to print? Print this section Print the entire contents of Print the entire contents of article.

This website also contains material copyrighted by 3rd parties. Control the Bleeding, Eliminate the Inhibitor. Recommended incivek-telaprevir Drugs. Need a Curbside Consult? Due to the difficult nature of fibromyalgia, treatment requires a team approach including the patient, physicians familiar with the condition rheumatologists, internists , physical-, massage- and occupational therapists, and other health care professionals. The main goal is the relief of pain and other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia and helping the affected individual to cope with the condition.

Treatment may include physical therapy, stress-relief methods, including light massage and manual lymph drainage, and medication for pain and sleep management. More information on these various treatment approaches is available on various online resources 4, 5. Several studies on the effectiveness of manual lymph drainage MLD in the treatment of fibromyalgia indicate that MLD yields positive results in terms of pain relief, stiffness, sleep and general health status 6, 7, 8.

As readers of this blog know, massage and manual lymph drainage are two very different manual treatment modalities. It is unfortunate that the term massage is often wrongly used to describe MLD. The origin of the word massage is derived from the Greek massain to knead and is used to describe such techniques as effleurage, petrissage, vibration, etc. Compared to traditional massage, the pressure applied with manual lymph drainage is much lower in intensity. The goal of these techniques is to manipulate the lymphatic structures located in the subcutaneous tissues.

In order to achieve the desired effect, the pressure should be sufficient enough to stretch the subcutaneous tissues against the fascia a structure separating the skin from the muscle layer located underneath, but not to manipulate the underlying muscle tissue. Do you need more information on other topics on lymphedema? Once selected, a new page will load with a number of articles related to the topic you chose. Click on any headline of the articles and the entire article will load up for you to read.

Join Lymphedema Guru , a Facebook page solely dedicated to inform about all things related to lymphedema — news, support groups, treatment centers, and much more. I do have lymphedema in both my legs from the knees down. I was first diagnosed in Prior to that my legs were very painful to the touch. I never thought about fibromyalgia until I received your email.

I never had a clue why my legs were so very sensitive to the touch. I was told by a lymphedema doctor that I may have a combination of lipodema and lymphedema. After reading your article, and also after years of treating patients with all kinds of conditions, I imagine that MLD is an underutilized treatment modality. Does anyone do post op MLD with orthopedic, abdominal, back surgeries. As a Lymphedema Therapist, I would like to find more research based studies on these.

Can you direct me to any sites that are valuable? Again a very very big thanks for this important article. There are quite a few lymphers who also have fibro. It is an interesting connection. Fibro is considered an autoimmune condition and lymphedema seriously effect the cell mediated immune system of our bodies. Thank you Jo, This article hit close to home for me. I have been practicing Lymphedema therapy for only 5years, and I have never thought of the treatment being very possibly helpful to my sister suffering with Fibro and Chronic fatique syndrom for several years now.

My question would be: Or is the pain from the fibromalgia pain siginals very localized? Thank for your reply. In this case it is not necessary to apply techniques on the neck. MLD in the treatment for fibromyalgia is geared toward pain management gate-control theory. Hi and thanks for the interesting article. I have to be put under general anesthesia in order to have a routine colonoscopy done. Also,I have read that the 11 out of 18 points being used for diagnosis assistance are now pretty obsolete, as people with FMS can have lots of pain in all sorts of places on their body.

Have you heard anything about that? I was a public school Special Education teacher for 25 years before these two syndromes knocked me slap out and I was having such a terrible time even trying to get out of bed to get ready for work. One rheumatologist thought that I might have Chronic Pain Syndrome, as the pain is everywhere. I do feel that retroviruses are going to eventually be found to be part of the FMS picture. When I have had to take an antibiotic, it seems to help my entire system feel a bit better for the time that I am taking the antibiotic.

Thank you so much for the information. Whenever I have tried to take Physical Therapy, it only made me feel worse and basically put me to bed for a week or so. But I do know that we are all different! Getting pain medication here in South Carolina has been made much more difficult, by the illegal use by drug abusers. So now, I have to go in once a month to my dr. What you say about the different names is interesting, as well. When my mother, now deceased, was a young adult, the dr.

She had a lot of pain, but it was thought to be pain from Osteo-Arthritis. I would appreciate if you could send me references of places where I can get MLD treatment in the Washington DC metropolitan area Virginia Maryland as I have all the symptoms described as fibromyalgia and have been in terrible pain for many years. Doctors never found an explanation. Have done physical therapy and acupuncture without any results.

Thank you very much. My edema was also in my arms and face so I brushed all over. Great invigorating sensations for the minutes. It enlived my day. Sit and stand many times per day. I had been previously trained and worked as a massage therapist and have a medical background in nursing…but I do suspect that I bought on this state myself.

Muscular System Anatomy