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Get to Know Your Lymph Nodes

Lymph nodes are tiny, round (or bean-shaped) structures distributed throughout your body. They serve as biological filters of a sort, helping to trap and eliminate potentially dangerous germs, such as bacteria or viruses, which might otherwise do you harm. In some places—such as under the arms, in the groin, and in the neck—they cluster in groups. You may even be …

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Could Lymphaticovenous Bypass Offer New Hope for Lymphedema Patients?

New research that suggests a combination of certain anti-inflammatory compounds already in use can stop and even reverse the progression of lymphedema when the condition is caught early enough. Now, a new surgical procedure called lymphaticovenous bypass (LVB) may be able to reverse lymphedema even after it is established. Present research into this groundbreaking surgery is focused on lymphedema of …

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Lymphedema Pain Management

For many lymphedema sufferers, their condition is more of a nuisance than a crisis. While certainly not welcome, some patients find that lymphedema is a condition that can be managed, at least. For example, lymphedema of the arms, which may affect the upper arm(s), lower arm(s), and/or hands, is not uncommon among women who have undergone treatments for breast cancer. …

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Should You Bother With a Pneumatic Compression Device?

If you had been diagnosed with lymphedema in the mid-20th century, chances are you would have been prescribed therapy with a pneumatic compression device (PCD). At the time, these lymphedema pumps resembled glorified blood pressure cuffs. They featured one chamber filled with pressurized air to squeeze your affected limb. In some instances, unsupervised patients used the devices at pressures that …

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Could You Be Predisposed to Lymphedema?

Lymphedema is a chronic condition that emerges for many patients after they’ve undergone certain treatments for cancer. That’s because radiation and/or surgical removal of tissues (often including some or all lymph nodes) can have a damaging effect on the lymphatic system in the affected area. Physical trauma is another potential trigger for lymphedema; perhaps subsequent to an accident, or following …

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Are Compression Boots the Real Deal?

Compression boots are the latest fad among certain well-heeled elite athletes, not to mention aspiring weekend warriors. You may not have heard of these boots, but they’re gaining traction. So what are they, and do they really deliver significant exercise-recovery benefits?  Also known as air compression boots, or compression recovery boots, these devices consist of a pair of spacesuit-looking (Antarctic …

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Lymphedema Patients Need to Exercise Special Care During Flu Season

The influenza virus is not a singular virus. Rather, it is a family of virulent, always mutating viruses, capable of doing extreme harm, depending on the patient, the strain, and even which variants happen to be circulating in the general population during a given flu season. Most people are aware that the annual spike in flu cases in the Northern …

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The Importance of Hydration for Managing Lymphedema

Lymphedema is a chronic illness that affects about one-third of women who undergo armpit lymph node removal due to treatment for breast cancer. The condition can strike soon after radiation, chemo, or surgical interventions. Or it can manifest years after these treatments have concluded. Damage to the lymphatic vessels and/or nodes causes patients to experience a loss in the lymphatic …

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Managing Lymphedema Symptoms in the Winter

Managing Lymphedema Symptoms in Winter For many of us, winter means cold, dark days. Obstacles like snow, ice, and freezing temperatures can make life hard, especially for those with lymphedema. So, what are the best ways to handle your lymphedema symptoms in the winter? The good news is, while winter may pose some unique challenges, it also eliminates others that …

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How to Determine Compression Levels for Your Garments

Determining Compression Levels Medical-grade compression wear comes in a range of pressure classifications. To be clear, you should always consult with your healthcare professional before investing in compression wear for the treatment of your lymphedema. Your provider can recommend or prescribe the best compression wear for your needs. Consistent self-care is crucial. And a big part of that will inevitably …