Manual Edema Mobilization

April 22-23, 2023
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday



Group Discounts

Groups of 4-6 from the same facility = 5% discount

Groups of 7+ from the same facility = 10% discount

For more information, email

Course Description

Following injury, orthopedic surgery, or trauma, patients often develop long-standing edema. The consequences of this complication include: persistent pain, delayed wound healing, and the development of fibrotic tissue that can block motion and impact overall return to function for the patient. Therapists often struggle with sub-acute edema management, despite their best efforts with interventions such as rest, ice, compression and elevation. The lymphatic system plays a crucial role in fluid homeostasis, yet this role has been greatly overlooked. Persistent edema is often the result of an overloaded lymphatic system.

Knowing how to activate the lymphatic system to quickly reduce swelling can make all the difference to patients for pain reduction, increasing ROM, and return to function.

The purpose of this course is to teach the therapist the lymphatic decongestion method of Manual Edema Mobilization (MEM). MEM is a specific treatment method with evidence-based rationale designed to reduce sub-acute and chronic edema. Lecture and hands-on labs will be used to learn the tenets and five key components of MEM. Problem-solving through case study presentations will help prepare participants to use MEM for managing sub-acute and chronic edema, as seen in their specific patient populations as soon as they return to practice on Monday.

This method is not applicable for primary lymphedema or post cancer (secondary) lymphedema treatment.

This two-day course covers upper extremity and lower extremity, including specific hand, finger, foot and toe management, and bandaging compression instruction.

The MEM method is a comprehensive treatment approach that applies the principles of lymphatic anatomy and physiology to rehabilitation care across the lifespan: from preterm infants to end of life care, and across abilities: from high-level athletes to those with movement impairments. It is also among the few courses that is applicable to a variety of providers OT, OTA, PT, PTA and Athletic Trainers. This course brings training that should be standard of care to all rehab professionals who treat patients who experience swelling. MEM Associates is working to create a paradigm shift in swelling management.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course the participant will:

  1. Learn the lymphatic system's role in fluid homeostasis (edema/swelling management).
  2. Discuss differential diagnosis of edema, and how MEM fits into treatment.
  3. Understand and demonstrate the 5 Key Components of MEM, including:
    • Diaphragmatic breathing
    • Light manual lymphatic system with 'Pump Points' and 'Clear and Flow'
    • Exercise incorporation
    • Adjuncts (compression, neutral warmth, kinesiology tape, and more)
    • Self-management home program design
  4. Discuss the contraindications, precautions, and limitations of Manual Edema Mobilization.
  5. Return to practice ready to apply the MEM method into your current patient care.

About the Instructor

Sandra Heald Sublett, PT, DPT, OCS, CLT , has practiced physical therapy in a variety of settings in 3 states since 1986 and is the owner of a specialty private practice PT and OT clinic in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She received her BS in PT from The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and transitional DPT from St. Ambrose University (Iowa) in 2008. She is a Certified Specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy (2010,2020) and a Certified Lymphedema Therapist (2005). Additionally, Dr. Sublett has passed competencies in vestibular rehabilitation, and held NDT certification. Past teaching experience includes an adjunct faculty position at Clarke University (Dubuque, IA), teaching continuing education courses through the Iowa Physical Therapy Association, serving as a consultant for total contact casting at a wound care center, and community lecturer on multiple topics related to PT. She is a member of the APTA, Association of Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Surgeons (allied health member), and VEDA (Vestibular Disorders Association). Sandy's special interests range from lower extremity biomechanics to balance and vestibular rehabilitation, but intertwined with these and everything between is a strong reliance on edema management to optimize outcomes. As an endorsed instructor of Manual Edema Mobilization, she has presented the full MEM course and topics related to edema management to professionals across the United States. Dr. Sublett looks forward to sharing treatment techniques that will change how clinicians view their abilities to enhance healing and recovery as well as maximize outcomes by reducing swelling. She is passionate about creating a paradigm shift in swelling management!


Day One

07:30 a.m. Course Registration/Sign-in & Continental Breakfast

08:00 a.m. Introductions & pre-test of knowledge

08:20 a.m. Tissue response to trauma

09:40 a.m. Anatomy & physiology of the cardiovascular and lymphatic systems

10:15 a.m. BREAK
10:30 a.m. Types of edema & differential diagnosis

11:00 a.m. 5 Key Components of Manual Edema Mobilization (MEM)

1. Diaphragmatic breathing (+ practice)

2. Light manual lymphatic system stimulation (+ practice)

  • Pump Points
  • Clear & Flow

3. Exercise incorporation

4. Adjuncts:

  • Compression/bandaging/garments
  • Elastic taping
  • Neutral warmth devices

5. Self-management home program design

12:30 p.m. LUNCH

01:30 p.m. Contraindications & precautions for MEM application

02:00 p.m. LAB: MEM method for the upper extremity

  • Diaphragmatic breathing & exercise
  • Manual technique for UE: pump point stimulation
  • Manual techniques for UE: clear & flow (including hand & fingers)

03:15 p.m. BREAK

03:30 .m. LAB: MEM for the upper extremity (cont.)


  • Compression/bandaging/garments
  • Elastic taping
  • Neutral warmth devices
  • Self-management home program design

05:00 p.m. ADJOURN



07:30 a.m. Sign-in & Continental Breakfast

08:00 a.m. Review of MEM tenets & 5 Key Components

08:45 a.m. Assessment & documentation

09:15 a.m. Lab: MEM for the lower extremity

  • Diaphragmatic breathing & exercise
  • Manual technique for LE: pump point stimulation

10:30 a.m. BREAK

10:45 a.m. LAB: MEM for the lower extremity (cont.)

Manual techniques for LE: clear & flow (including foot & toes)


  • Compression/bandaging/garments
  • Elastic taping
  • Neutral warmth devices
  • Self-management home program design

12:30 p.m. LUNCH

01:30 p.m. Practical Application

  • UE Treatment intervention demonstration
  • UE Treatment performance
  • LE Treatment intervention demonstration
  • LE Treatment performance

(Break as needed)

03:30 p.m. Participant specific case review & analysis: UE & LE

04:30 p.m. Final Q & A session, post-test of knowledge

05:00 p.m. Adjourn



Texas Children's Hospital Feigin Center

1st Floor Conference Room A
1102 Bates Street
Houston, TX 77030

Click here for directions

Hotel Accommodations


1709 Dryden Road
Houston, TX 77030

United States

+1 346.388.0412


Book your corporate rate for Texas Children's Project Rate

Nightly rate: $122.00 (price varies based on room availability)

For More Information


Send us an email


Who Should Attend

PTs, PTAs, OTs, COTAs, and ATCs


15 contact hours or CCU's. Texas Children's Hospital is a preferred provider for the Texas Physical Therapy Association, APS #2604051TX.