Lymphedema Treatment

Treatment photo Kim and Chris

Did you know?
There are specialized techniques to help patients with the effects of Lymphedema. Lymphedema Treatment is a combination of education and “hands-on” treatment that helps patients learn to successfully manage Lymphedema in their lives.
Lymphedema Treatment generally includes a combination of:
⦁ Manual lymph drainage/massage
⦁ Compression bandaging
⦁ Skincare work
⦁ Exercises

This specialized treatment is effective for:
⦁ Moving excess lymph fluid to allow for efficient drainage
⦁ Reducing swelling and discomfort
⦁ Eliminating toxins from the body
⦁ Keeping the skin supple and healthy

What is Lymphedema and how is it treated?
Lymphedema is a condition that can happen to cancer patients when lymph fluid builds up in the body, resulting in swelling and other possible symptoms. A person’s risk for developing lymphedema depends, in part, on the type of procedure or surgery that was done, whether or not lymph nodes were removed, and how the body heals. Lymphedema treatment works to reduce the side effects that may develop.

How does Lymphedema Treatment work?
Lymphatic Massage is a specialized hands-on technique that gently stimulates the action of the lymph vessels to move excess lymphatic fluid and protein from a swollen area to a part of the body where it can drain more effectively. After Lymphatic Massage, the therapist may wrap the area in compression bandaging, which is needed to help the tissue with fluid reflow. Depending on the extent of the swelling, patients are encouraged to commit to follow-up care as often as needed to control the swelling and soften the tissue. When the edema is under control patients are advised to wear a compression garment during the day and bandaging or use of a “night” sleeve during sleep.

The Lymphatic Massage Therapist at the Sari Center is specially trained, licensed and certified and will monitor your skin closely and recommend the best ways to clean, skin brush and moisturize the affected area. Also, self-massage and lymphatic exercises that can be done at home will be suggested to promote continuity of care and long-term management of this condition.

Studies and additional resources:
⦁ Source: Cancer Research UK : Lowering your risk of lymphedema

⦁ National Lymphedema Network: Website with information and resources for patients

Lymphatic Specialist