Pneumonia is a common cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. While antibiotics are generally effective for the treatment of infection, the emergence of resistant strains of bacteria threatens their success. The osteopathic medical profession has designed a set of manipulative techniques called lymphatic pump techniques (LPT), to enhance the flow of lymph through the lymphatic system. Clinically, LPT is used to treat infection and oedema and might be an effective adjuvant therapy in patients with pneumonia. The immune system uses the lymphatic and blood systems to survey to rid the body of pathogens; however, only recently have the effects of LPT on the lymphatic and immune systems been investigated. This short review highlights clinical and basic science research studies that support the use of LPT to enhance the lymphatic and immune systems and treat pneumonia, and discusses the potential mechanisms by which LPT benefits patients with pneumonia.
- Gastrointestinal lymphoid tissue
- Lymphatic pump techniques
- Lymphatic system
- Osteopathic manipulative medicine