We believe that is important for you to know as much as possible about lymphedema and its care, which is why we’ve included some basic information about lymphedema, its causes, and our services for you. If you are ready to schedule a consultation via phone, please visit the Contact Us page.
What Is Lymphedema?
Lymphedema is an accumulation of lymph fluid between the tissue layers. This presents as swelling or edema. Lymphedema can be present anywhere in the body.
Areas affected by lymphedema may be very thick and heavy feeling. Treatment is necessary to move the fluid and excess protein out of the area. If you don’t receive proper treatment, over time, the lymphatic vessels will stretch out permanently and you may need external compression and treatment for the rest of your life to maintain proper pressure in the valves to move fluid more normally.
Not only that, lymphedema also causes oxygen levels in the vessels to drop, keeping wounds, surgery sites, and skin ulcerations from healing. That can put you at risk of cellulitis, or infection of the bloodstream.
Many people report the first signs and symptoms of lymphedema as a feeling of tightness or heaviness, decreased flexibility in the joints, and clothing or jewelry fitting tightly. Some patients only report strange sensations such as tingling or a crawling feeling on the skin.
For more information about lymphedema, take a few minutes and watch the videos at the bottom of the page.
What Causes Lymphedema?
There are basically two types of lymphedema. One form is Primary Lymphedema, and it is present from birth. This is a congenital form of lymphedema caused by a malformation of the lymph vessels or nodes. Although it may show up at birth, it can remain undetected, not manifesting until later in life. Primary lymphedema is often present when there are other cognitive issues at birth (i.e. Down’s syndrome)
Secondary lymphedema is caused after lymph vessels are destroyed or lymph nodes are removed. This form of lymphedema comes through a number of sources: oncology care (including radiation, chemotherapy, and/or surgery), tumors, infection, compromise of the vascular system, burns, liposuction and general trauma.
Lymphedema does not necessarily develop right after surgery. It can develop decades later!
How Can LCS Help Me?
Lymphatic Care Specialists, LLC is a full-service lymphatic treatment center that provides hands-on manual lymphatic therapy, or MLD, compression bandaging, skin care, education, exercise, and supply of products related to MLD/CDP therapy (including compression stockings), at surprisingly low costs. We are also authorized dealers of CircAid and Reid Sleeve products and we assist with the fitting and ordering of those products. We assist in obtaining lymphedema pumps and custom garments if necessary. Fortunately we can also provide silicone breast prostheses, mastectomy bras and many other products geared toward oncology patients.
Phone consultations are available to guide you in finding the appropriate help for your specific situation.
For more information regarding lymphedema, watch the following video:
To see what a sample therapy session would look like, please take a few minutes and watch this video: