Allergies and the Lymph System

The lymph system is the body's drainage system. It is composed of a network of vessels and small structures called lymph nodes. The lymph vessels convey excess fluid collected from all over the body back into the blood circulation. Along the way, however, these fluids are forced to percolate through the lymph nodes so that they can be filtered. Harmful organisms are trapped and destroyed by the specialized white blood cells, called lymphocytes, that are present in these nodes. Lymphocytes are also added to the lymph that flows out of nodes and back to the bloodstream.


Antibodies are manufactured by the lymph system. Antibodies are specialized proteins that the body produces in response to invasion by a foreign substance. The process of antibody formation begins when an antigen stimulates specialized lymphocytes, called B cells, into action. Antibodies then counteract invading antigens by combining with the antigen to render it harmless to the body.

Some antibodies coat the harmful organisms so that the body's scavenger cells can recognize and destroy them more easily.
During periods of active antibody production, lymph nodes often enlarge and become tender to the touch.

For example, a vaccination (injection of a natural or artificial antigen to stimulate the body to produce protective antibodies) in the arm can cause swelling of the nodes in the armpit, while mononucleosis causes enlargement of nodes that can be felt under the skin of the armpits, groin, and neck. The spleen (an organ located in the upper left part of the abdomen) is also important in the production of antibodies.

The Immune Response

Production of white blood cells and antibodies in reaction to an invading disease organism is called an immune response.

Sometimes, the immune system causes reactions that make the body unusually sensitive to foreign material. When the immune response is disruptive to the body in this way, it is called an allergic reaction. 

When one suffers from hayfever, the body's immune system goes into high gear as it over reacts to pollen, mold spores or other foreign body invaders. The result is irritation and inflammation of the sinuses.
Manual Lymphatic Drainage can relieve or ease hayfever and other allergy symptoms. For those suffering from sinus infections, MLD can remove much of the congestive material from around the facial area.  It allows the body's own healing system to do what it is intended to do: stimulates the circulation of fluid through lymph nodes, where disease causing organisms are destroyed by white blood cells and returns it to the cardiovascular system.
Appointment: (714) 343-1966