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Posted March 2012   

 

My Visit to the Földi Clinic

By John Mulligan, RMT/CLT-LANA

In the final week of June 2011 I attended the MLD/CDT Advanced and Review class at the Földi clinic in the Black Forest region of Germany. Classes were taught entirely in English as part of a series of courses presented by Klose Training & Consulting with the cooperation of the Földi Clinic and staff.

 

The Földi Clinic is a 160 bed hospital and clinical complex dedicated to the care and treatment of lymphedema and related disorders. There are about 14 physicians on staff, 38 massage therapists who specialize in lymphedema care, and 34 nurses and nurse-practitioners. There are also physiotherapists, nutritionists, psychologists and numerous support staff.

 

While the Földi Clinic is impressive, it is not entirely unique in Europe. Within the region are the Wittlinger Clinic and the Asdonk Clinic. Each clinic is similar in scope and size to the Földi Clinic; each clinic has its claim to fame. The Wittlinger Clinic was founded by students of the Dr. Emil Vodder, who originated the manual technique of Manual Lymph Drainage. The Dr. Asdonk clinics were founded by the physician who did the most to bring lymphology into the mainstream of German medicine. That lymphedema treatment in Germany is largely paid for by insurance is seen as central to his accomplishments.

 

The Földi Clinic is known for putting together the pieces of Complex Decongestive Therapy, or CDT, now recognized as the Gold Standard of treatment for lymphedema. There is an emphasis on MLD, advanced bandaging, movement, exercise and nutrition.

 

As students, our experience was varied. We were able to observe patient treatments from the first day of 5 days of class. Watching a Földi Clinic therapist, who has been treating patients in the clinic every workday for the past 15 years, was a revelation. The MLD was relaxed and impeccably performed. The bandaging was creative and impressive.

 

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