Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphatic Drainage

Treatment for post mastectomy & general lymphedema, sports injuries, acute whiplash, sinusitis, chronic pain, post surgical & other forms of edema

Massage Therapy Kelowna - 3D Anatomy of female lymphatic system

The Lymphatic System

Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) primarily affects the lymphatic system. It is an effective treatment for a variety of conditions, including post mastectomy lymphedema

History of Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphathic Drainage

Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphatic drainage (MLD) was first used in the 1930’s by Danish Drs Emil Vodder and Estrid Vodder. Initially it was used for the treatment of chronic sinusitis and other immune disorders. The Vodder’s noticed that many of their patients had swollen lymph nodes and began to study the lymphatic system to determine the level of connection between the lymphatic system and these conditions. After four years of research Dr Vodder’s MLD was introduced in Paris, France in 1936.

What is the lymphatic system?

The lymphatic system is a circulatory system within the human body. It is located just beneath the skin and alongside almost all blood vessels throughout the  body. It pumps fluid through tiny contractions within the walls of the lymphatic capillaries and through this pumping pushes the fluid to processing sites within the body. The functions of the lymphatic system include: immune system support, preventing lymphedema by returning excess fluid from tissues back into the bloodstream, wound healing and deconstruction of unnecessary scar tissue.

Edema and Lymphedema

Edema and lymphedema refer to the buildup of excess fluid in the tissues. This fluid build up can be painful and it can also prolong the healing process. Edema and lymphedema can also affect tissue health by limiting the flow of fresh blood into an area.

What is Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphatic Drainage?

Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) is a type of massage that primarily affects the lymphatic system. Because much of the lymphatic system is located close to the skin the technique itself is very gentle and rhythmic.The technique encourages the lymphatic capillaries to contract and greatly increases the efficiency of the lymphatic system.This technique can prevent and treat lymphedema, improve the function of the immune system and prevent or treat excess scar tissue formation.

What is combined decongestive therapy (CDT) ?

Combined Decongestive Therapy is an approach that uses Dr Vodder’s MLD along with compression garments/bandaging, skin care and exercise. This approach maximizes the effectiveness of MLD and is particularly effective for lymphedema.


Because the lymphatic system is involved in many processes within the body, Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymphatic Drainage / CDT is effective for:

Post Mastectomy and general lymphedema


Acute Sprains and Sports injuries

Chronic Venous insufficiency

Dermatological conditions including acne, oily or dry skin

Post surgical edema or lymphedema

Acute whiplash

Pain Management



Biranne Kokayko has undergone extensive training and is a Dr Vodder certified MLD / CDT Therapist.