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What is Lymphedema?

In most cases, Lymphedema causes swelling, known as edema, an inflammation of the skin and can eventually lead to ulcers that can be difficult to treat. Swelling can take place on different parts of the body, and can impact people in different ways.

Lymphedema can sometimes be a hereditary condition, while some people can develop the condition after a surgical procedure, an infection, or another type of physical trauma. Lymph is the body fluid that accumulates when the lymphatic system is compromised, resulting in a blockage of fluid that is unable to release. Breast cancer surgery is one of the more common triggers for Lymphedema symptoms. Radiation is a common risk factor as well, as it can traumatize the lymphatic system.

How the Lymphatic System is Affected

Your lymphatic system plays a major role in protecting your immune system and keeping you from coming down with anything from the common cold to the flu. However, the primary function of the lymphatic system is to support the balance of fluid in the body by removing excess water, plasma proteins and cellular debris. The lymphatic system will then move the fluid to the lymph nodes to begin the detoxification process before returning the fluid to the veins.

Lymphedema is a result of several different factors impacting the lymphatic system. Most cases are a result of the lymphatic system and/or the venous system not developing properly at birth or the lymphatic system suffering from damage. In both instances, there is blood and fluid leakage into the surrounding tissue wherever the blood flow is blocked. As a result, you will start to see swelling, hyperpigmentation, and hardening of the affected region.

Treatment Options

Currently there is no definitive cure for people living with lymphedema, however, symptoms can be very well controlled through the care of a doctor coupled with an at-home regimen that might include medical aids, most often in the form of a Lymphedema pump.

Many people will utilize compression stockings, multilayer bandaging, or Lymphedema pumps while the leg or affected body part remains elevated. Staying on top of your personal hygiene, as well as using physical supports like stockings, pumps or bandaging, can have a relieving effect on your symptoms.

It is important to treat lymphedema as soon as it occurs to ensure that it does not turn into a more serious situation. Aeroflow can help you every step of the way, from treating your symptoms to offering support and the products you need to find relief. Give us a call today to get started.

Want to learn more? Call 888.345.1780 or email a Specialist to get started.

Resources

lymphedema-treatment

Frequently Asked Questions About Lymphedema

Bio Comfort Care and Cleaning Instructions

Travel Tips for Your Lymphedema Pump

Lymphedema Specialist Search

Lymphedema Online Support Community

Learn more about the Lymphedema Treatment and Awareness Act

 

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