Frequently Asked Questions about the HIVAMAT 200 System

What is the HIVAMAT 200 System?
The HIVAMAT is Deep Oscillation Therapy that uses an electro-static current to treat swelling, relieve soft tissue pain, assist with detoxification, and help injuries and surgical wounds to heal faster. Developed in 1973 at a clinic in Germany, it is FDA approved German engineering at it’s finest.

How does the HIVAMAT 200 System work?
The electro-static current gently pulls and pushes the tissues under the therapists hands up and down creating a sensation of vibration. Skin, muscle, blood vessels, and connective tissue are all effected in a positive way to help injuries recover faster. A treatment consists of the therapist connecting an electronic lead to themselves and the patient. Vinyl gloves are worn by the therapist so that the circuit created is not completed and the “push pull” effect happens. The patient experiences no discomfort because gentle pressure is used to maintain the effect of Deep Oscillation Therapy.

How does the HIVAMAT 200 System treat swelling?
The Deep Oscillation Therapy pulsations enhance the movement of lymph. This decongests the tissue and reduces swelling in the region being treated. The HIVAMAT is very beneficial for the relief of Lymphedema when combined with Manual Lymphatic Drainage performed by a Certified Lymphedema Therapist.

How does the HIVAMAT 200 System assist with detoxification?
The HIVAMAT can be used along with the manual techniques performed in Manual Lymphatic Drainage. This enhances the movement of lymph which moves metabolic waste quicker through the system and also produces lymphocytes to improve the immune system.

 How does the HIVAMAT 200 System improve injury recovery time and relieve muscle and joint pain?
The HIVAMAT assists with three key factors: it helps bring more blood to the area providing oxygen and nutrients, it breaks up fibrous tissue to provide pliability and reduce pain from movement, and it helps move metabolic waste out of the injured area. These factors combined help speed up the recovery process and the healing time.

How does the HIVAMAT 200 System help pulmonary issues?
The HIVAMAT is essential for moving fluid from the lungs helping respiratory conditions including bronchitis. It also helps relieve congestion making it useful for sinus infections.

How does the HIVAMAT 200 System help to heal surgical wounds?
The HIVAMAT assists with moving exudate, which is pus, away from the wound. It also removes necrotic tissue and brings oxygen and nutrients to the injured tissues to speed up recovery. The inflammation is calmed down, the swelling is relieved, fluid is moved away from the wound allowing it to heal faster.

Is the HIVAMAT 200 System safe to use after plastic surgery procedures?
The HIVAMAT is FDA approved, safe and effective to use 24 hours post surgical. It relieves swelling that will put pressure on incisions that could possibly increase scaring and assists in the removal of bruising in the area. Swelling and infection can have a significant effect on incisions. The HIVAMAT will ensure proper after care to maintain the improvements you desire. It is also beneficial to use before surgery to prepare the area by removing metabolic waste and increasing lymphocytes to boost immunity in the area.

How does the HIVAMAT 200 System minimize the appearance of cellulite?
The HIVAMAT positively influences blood and lymph flow increasing nutrition and removing toxins
from the area. It also breaks up fibrous formations called septae which are responsible for anchoring the connective tissue to the muscle. These fibrous bands create fat chambers where the fat pushes up and the bands pull down causing the dimpled appearance. The HIVAMAT breaks down these fibrous bands and encourages greater elasticity to reduce “orange peel”. Inflammation causing edema is relieved leaving a smooth appearance.

What conditions would prevent use of the HIVAMAT 200 System?
Over all the HIVAMAT is FDA approved and safe and effective for many uses. A few conditions would prevent use. Those are: pregnancy, blood clots, heart conditions including a pacemaker, and active tumors.

Manual Lymphatic Drainage: Pre and Post-Operative

Choosing to have cosmetic or reconstructive surgery can be one of the most difficult decisions you will ever make. You put time into researching the best surgeons and surgery centers, but have you thought about your after care? Who can help you with swelling, bruising, and scar tissue that risks the benefits of the surgery you just received?  A Certified Therapist in Manual Lymphatic Drainage may be your answer.

The Lymphatic System is naturally compromised after the trauma of a surgery. The incisions made cut through lymphatic vessels that are crucial for carrying away excess fluid and cellular debris.  These vessels will begin to regenerate in about 2 weeks. Until then,  Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) will reroute lymph to healthy vessels which will reduce swelling, clear bruises faster, and minimize scar tissue.  All this will accelerate your healing time during this critical recovery phase. MLD is also preferred because of it’s gentle techniques. The light pressure and rhythmic flow of the procedure is very calming, even sedative.  It is recommended to have 2-5 sessions per week beginning 24-48 hours following surgery.

MLD is also beneficial before surgery. 2-5 treatments are recommended with the last session 24-48 hours prior to surgery. Treatments will prepare your body by clearing fluid accumulation,  detoxification, and removal of cellular debris. This will reduce the chances for infection by cleansing the tissues at the site of the future incisions.  MLD also accelerates the production of lymphocytes which are small white blood cells that play a large role in fighting disease in our bodies.

All this in mind, it is important to find a therapist who is properly trained to do these procedures. Each area of the body requires an exact sequence of precise hand movements applied in a specific series of repetitions.  MLD is not taught as general education to licensed massage therapists. Beware also of equipment and gadgets that are being used by untrained technicians claiming to give the same results as MLD.  A certified therapist will have completed at least 135 hours of training and had to pass exams to qualify for this title. Receiving treatment from a less trained practitioner could be ineffective or even harmful.  Done correctly, Manual Lymphatic Drainage is a necessary complement to your cosmetic or reconstructive surgery.

Treating Fibromyalgia with Manual Lymphatic Drainage

Fibromyalgia is a syndrome most commonly associated with chronic pain. The National Fibromyalgia Association estimates that 3-6% of the world population is affected by this syndrome, 10 million of those people in the U.S. According to the American College of Rheumatology, even though this condition can affect any gender, race, or age, middle aged women comprise about 80% of this population.

The most prevalent symptom is chronic widespread pain and tenderness in muscles,joints and soft tissue. Fatigue and sleep disturbances are also experienced. Specific causes are unknown and there are no diagnostic laboratory tests to make a correct diagnosis. Physicians have to rely on patient’s self reported symptoms, history, and a physical exam manually checking 18 specific tender points.

Due to the difficult nature of fibromyalgia it takes a team effort from the patient and all their health care professionals to work toward the common goal of relief from pain and other symptoms involved. Treatment may include physical therapy, light massage, and manual lymphatic drainage. Several studies have yielded positive results for manual lymphatic drainage (MLD). This technique brought relief from pain and stiffness as well as helping to induce better nights of sleep. A controlled study was done to compare connective tissue massage and MLD. Over all, MLD provided the best results.

The Difference Between Manual Lymphatic Drainage and Massage Therapy

Manual Lymphatic Drainage(MLD) and massage therapy are two very different manual treatment modalities. The only similarity is that both have techniques that require the therapist to put their hands on the client’s skin. The word “massage” originates from the Greek word “massain” which means to knead. This describes techniques such as effleurage, long gliding strokes, and petrissage, kneading strokes. Pressure is also applied to reach underlying muscle tissue.

The pressure used when giving a MLD session is of much lower intensity. The intent is to effect lymphatic structures located in the subcutaneous tissues. To do this, strokes are used to stretch the skin and then a directional stroke to send lymphatic fluid toward the regional lymph nodes. This technique should be sufficient enough to stretch the subcutaneous tissue against the fascia but not manipulate the muscle tissue in that area. The amount of pressure needed could be compared to the pressure you would use to stroke a newborn’s head.

The purpose for MLD is to increase the rate at which the lymphatic system pumps. The accelerated drainage promotes pain control and the light pressure is soothing and sedative. In a case of Lymphedema, the lymph is rerouted around blocked areas to centrally located healthy vessels to relieve chronic swelling. This increase of drainage is also beneficial for detoxification. The lymph nodes produce lymphocytes which are white blood cells. Their job is to attack foreign invaders. The antibodies produced travel through the body by way of lymph fluid to assist the immune system. Both MLD and massage therapy are beneficial treatments. Discuss with your massage therapist which treatment will bring the desired result you need.

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep tissue massage is a type of massage that focuses on deeper layers of muscles and connective tissue. It is beneficial for chronic muscle tension or soft tissue injuries. Some of the same strokes are applied as in a relaxation massage but they are slower and much deeper. Adhesions in muscles, tendons, and ligaments can block circulation and cause pain. Limited range of motion and inflammation may also be present.

Deep tissue massage works by physically breaking down these adhesions to relieve pain and restore normal movement. To accomplish this, the therapist will use direct pressure or friction to the inflamed area. This can cause discomfort or pain. It is important to let your therapist know when the pain is outside of your comfort level. You may experience sore or stiff muscles for a day or so after your treatment. You can apply ice to these areas to help decrease the pain and drink plenty of water.

Studies have shown massage therapy to be beneficial for stress relief, managing anxiety and depression, pain management, and blood pressure control. Massage can also help with infant growth, boosting immunity, sports related injuries, and during cancer treatments. Beyond these benefits people enjoy massage because it involves care and comfort which brings about a sense of well being. According to an August 2005 issue of Consumer Reports magazine, 34,000 people ranked deep tissue massage more effective in relieving osteoarthritis pain than physical therapy, exercise, prescription medications, chiropractic, acupuncture, diet, glucosamine and over-the-counter drugs.

Is it Edema or Lymphedema?

At one time or another, most of us have had to deal with swelling in certain parts of our bodies. Swollen legs from standing on your feet all day, a sprained wrist, puffy feet and ankles during pregnancy, or swelling in one arm after breast cancer surgery. To determine whether it is edema or lymphedema we need to know the factors responsible for the swelling. At this time there is no objective tool to accurately diagnose lymphedema. A diagnosis of lymphedema is based on clinical observation and thorough history.

Most injuries like strains and sprains cause edema. The swelling usually goes away within a couple weeks with ice and elevation. It’s expected to have edema following a surgery. It’s also common for women to have puffy feet and ankles nearing the end of a pregnancy. The excess weight can block the lymphatic system from proper circulation.These situations usually resolve themselves and over time the swelling goes away. But what happens when the swelling lasts longer than expected?

Lymphedema is classified as primary and secondary. Primary is due to congenital malformations in the lymphatic system such as defective valves or vessels. Secondary lymphedema is acquired. Some of the causes are dissection or removal of lymph nodes, radiation, trauma, surgery, infection, malignancies, chronic venous insufficiencies, immobility, deep venous thrombosis, and pregnancy. When there is chronic long term swelling damage is caused to the surrounding tissue. This compresses the delicate lymphatic vessels impeding proper lymphatic flow. When this happens protein in the fluid builds up causing fibrotic changes to the tissues. Accumulation of fluid also causes restricted movement of joints, postural abnormalities, and sensory changes due to compression of nerves. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms contact a Certified Lymphedema Therapist for help.