is an excess of protein-enriched lymph fluid in a body part caused by disruption of the lymph system.
Primary lymphedema results from developmental abnormalities.
The more common secondary lymphedema can result from surgery (especially involving lymph node removal), radiation therapy, tumors or infection and trauma. Symptoms include tightness, swelling or thickening of the body part, burning or tingling radiating down the extremity and feelings of heaviness and aching.
- Patient self-management education.
- Range of motion, strengthening and cardiovascular exercises to stimulate the lymph system.
- Specialized compression bandages to be worn most of the day and night for six to eight weeks.
- Manual lymphatic drainage techniques.
- Custom compression garments to be worn during the day.