Lecture with demonstration to the 9th Congress of the German Society for Aesthetic Medicine and Related Fields, 29 and 30 May, 1964 - Regensburg.
The Vodder method of lymph drainage.
A new chirotherapeutic treatment method for aesthetic, prophylactic and curative purposes.
By E. Vodder, Copenhagen
It is a particular pleasure to present our new chirotherapeutic treatment method, lymph drainage for aesthetic, prophylactic and curative purposes, at this distinguished meeting of colleagues and specialists. "Lymphatic drainage" is a method whereby the lymphatic system is stimulated by means of a special form of massage that eliminates fluid build-up and speeds up fluid circulation. The lymph drainage method can be viewed as an all embracing, effective method of regeneration, supplemented by breathing and relaxation exercises, diet and other measures. The drainage movements not only work on the water-rich connective tissue but also have a deep action of all of the other tissues of the body, such as lymph and other secretions. The term 'lymph' covers both the nutrient fluid supplied to the cells (interstitial lymph) but also the fluid in the billions of cells, the protoplasm, that comprise half of the lymph fluid, and the waste substances leaving the cells and draining away via the lymph channels. We are able to drain approximately 50 to 60% of the bodily fluids. "These different fluids, which have different names, are separated from each other only by thin membranes and are very difficult to differentiate by chemical analysis." (Prof. Rusznyak)
Interest in the previously almost unknown lymph system as a basis for treatment has grown and grown, to the point where it should now be regarded as a new specialist area of "lymphology". We are especially grateful here to Dr. Nuernbergk of Frankfurt, who was the first German surgeon to grasp intuitively the scientific value of the lymph drainage method.
As you will recall, Alexis Carrel won the Nobel Prize for the culture of living cells in his chicken heart experiment with renewal of lymph fluid. It is on the findings that my method is based.
Both lymph vessels and blood vessels serve the same purpose: constantly to maintain the composition and volumes of fluid within the body. Every organ, every tissue, takes what it needs from the blood plasma passing through the walls of the capillaries and uses it to build the lymph environment specific to the relevant organ tissue. Blood vessels do not communicate directly at any point with functioning organ tissues within the organism. Blood capillaries and organ parenchyma are always separated by connective tissue cells. Between the cells, paracapillary circulation occurs and the tissue lymph here, as indeed throughout the body, is the medium by which transport between cells and capillaries takes place. The connective tissue system is a vast reservoir of body fluids, always at the ready to supply glands and other functional organs with water.
The human body, like all living beings, should be viewed as a whole in which all of the individual parts and organs are connected through the lymph. We know that lymph supplies the body with the flow of fluid that it needs in order to survive. All of the chemical processes in the cells are possible only because the lymph flow passes through the cell; faster the flow removes the decomposition products, the more active the metabolism and the better the conditions of life. Lymph drainage offers a completely different anatomical and physiological basis for treatment in this respect. The aim of drainage is to remove and renew the tissue fluid, allowing new nutrients to come in and new resistance to be built up. This form of drainage supports, as effectively as possible, the body's own natural endeavours to cleanse itself.
However, the lymph tissue works not only as a cleansing, protective and defensive system, but also as a nutrient tissue, because the lymphocytes contribute new building materials, such as trophocytes, stems cells, etc., to the tissue metabolism. The daily task of producing and preparing large quantities of nucleic acid-rich lymphocytes in order to build new and growing tissue and for reconstructive processes in colossal.
When we were sent Dr. Zilch's valuable book "Lymphsystem und Lymphatismus" (Lymph system and Lymphatism) in the autumn of 1963, we were very pleasantly surprised and astounded to learn that many German doctors and scientists are concentrating on research into the almost unknown lymph system and the main disease group: lymphatism.
In one of 43 essays in the books, Dr. Gruner calls on practitioners, including the small town specialist who is able to observe his patients over decades, to help put together an overall picture. The general and local symptoms attributed to lymphatic manifestations are unfortunately increasing, with continually recurring infections and catarrh.
Dr. Asdonk, a GP in Essen, has so many positive experiences with the method in the course of a year that he trained up a second assistant. His experiences relate to eczema, chronic inflammatory processes and traumatic oedema, allergies and osteopathies.
We have conducted a number of experiments with Dr. V. Kolitshcer, in Zell am See. He took measurements with an electronic acupuncture device and with an oscillograph by Prof. Gesenius' method before and after treatment, which clearly showed a more even flow of lymph and in particular, a reduced burden on the diseased organ.
A wealth of experience gained in clinical work at the bedside and by the practical activity with thousands of out-patients in many countries has confirmed out theories. There may not be a single uniform treatment for lymphatism, but I am convinced that the lymph drainage method, correctly applied, represents a universal treatment which could be used as the basis for all lymph therapy, for aesthetic, prophylactic and curative purposes.
(Followed by a brief demonstration of head treatment and leg treatment with explanations)
Ref: Vodder, E (1965) The Vodder method of lymph drainage. A new chirotherapeutic treatment method for aesthetic, prophylactic and curative purposes. Aesthet.Medizin. 14 (6), 190-1.
Translated in November 2004 by Integrated Language Services, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.
Also posted at http://www.vodderschool.com/current_articles