Lymphedema is the swelling of a body part, due to abnormal accumulation of protein rich edema fluid. This is a condition that occurs from a deficient or damaged lymphatic system. Primary lymphedema is categorized into three types: Congenital, Praecox, and Tarda, and can occur throughout various stages of life without an obvious cause. Secondary lymphedema occurs when the lymph nodes or part of the lymphatic system has been altered from radiation, chronic infection or trauma, or before surgeries. Cancer is the most common cause of lymphedema in the United States.
Our Physical Therapists are specialty trained to perform Manual Lymphatic Drainage/Complete Decongestive Physiotherapy (MLD/CDP). MLD/CDP is a comprehensive approach to treating patients with lymphedema and is the most effective form of treatment. They also provide consultation during the breast cancer survivorship program offered at Clarkson West.
Treatment components include:
- Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD)
- Compression Bandaging
- Exercise prescription
- Education to patient and family members