Lymphoedema is characterised by swelling of certain parts of the body, caused by problems within the lymphatic system. Any part of the body can be affected by lymphoedema, but it tends to target the arms and legs. Around 300,000 Australians will experience lymphoedema at any given time.
Traditional Chinese Medicine offers a unique understanding of how fluids are moved and metabolised within the body that is not limited by the modern understanding of the lymphatic system. It also describes a unique system of channels and meridians that acts as an intricate communication pathway throughout the whole body. It is through these pathways that fluids are moved and metabolised.
By tapping into these alternative energy pathways we are able to facilitate the proper movement of fluids around the body to help manage the symptoms of lymphoedema.
Often the affected limb cannot be treated directly with acupuncture. In these cases the opposite limb is treated. How is it possible to have an effective treatment if we are not directly treating the affected limb? The unique system of meridians as described in Chinese medicine can be utilised to great effect in these cases.
The meridians that exist on the right hand side of the body are mirrored exactly on the left hand side. If, for example, lymphoedema exists in a limb on the right, the left side can be treated thus avoiding the risk of triggering further fluid accumulation in the affected limb.
Acupuncture pins are not the only tools that can be used during a treatment. Acupuncture points can be stimulate by other methods, such as using magnetic pellets and acupressure, as well as moxibustion and LASER acupuncture for appropriate cases.