Have you ever experienced swelling in your arm or leg and get no improvement even after you elevate it? If so, you may be experiencing lymphedema, a medical condition that may occur when the lymph nodes are not working properly. Lymph nodes are part of the lymphatic system which helps remove excess fluid from your body.
Lymph nodes can be affected by injury, surgery, radiation or even a deformity that happens at birth. When you have lymphedema, an abnormal amount of swelling in the body tissues occurs.
There are various treatments for lymphedema. Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT) is considered the best approach for treating lymphedema, and is the treatment used at MetroWest Medical Center. This treatment consists of:
- Manual Lymph Drainage, a pain-free, comfortable, soothing massage technique that mobilizes the fluid
- Skin care to prevent infections
- Compression bandaging
Along with therapy, you will be instructed in exercises and how to take care of your skin. You will also be taught ways to manage your swelling once your therapy is completed.