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Doctor insights on: Trying Therapy Treat Lymphedema Arm

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Dr. Khashayar Salartash Dr. Salartash
Surgery - Vascular
25 years in practice
George Washington University Medical School
1

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I am trying to find where to go for therapy to treat lymphedema of the arm. What should I consider?

I am trying to find where to go for therapy to treat lymphedema of the arm. What should I consider?

MLD: You need to find a lymphedema center that provides manual lymphatic drainage and complete decongestive therapy. This is a specialized program that is the bet treatment for patients with lymphedema. ...Read more

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Dr. Ted King
420 doctors shared insights

Lymphedema (Definition)

The lymph channels work to return fluid from the lower extremities back towards the heart, and filter out bacteria. If the lymph channels and not functioning appropriately swelling of the affected limb is most common presentation. The swelling usually occurs during daily activities and improves with leg elevation. In order to prevent swellingUse a compression ...Read more


Dr. Peter H'doubler Dr. H'doubler
Surgery - Vascular
36 years in practice
Harvard Medical School
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What treatment for lymphedema that will not cost an arm?

What treatment for lymphedema that will not cost an arm?

Should be covered..: Compression and lymphatic massage are the mainstays of therapy for lymphedema. As lymphedema is a diagnosis of exclusion, make sure you see a vascular specialist and that other causes of swelling have been ruled out. Your therapy should be covered if a specialist makes the diagnosis of lymphedema. ...Read more

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Dr. Devon Webster Dr. Webster
Internal Medicine - Oncology
18 years in practice
Stanford University School of Medicine
3

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Can physical therapy improve symptoms of lymphedema?

Can physical therapy improve symptoms of lymphedema?

Yes: Physical therapy is very helpful for lymphedema, especially if the therapist is trained in lymphatic drainage. Physical therapists may do gentle lymphatic massage, wrap or tape the swollen arm, break-up scar tissue and lymphatic cords, and teach you techniques for home care of lymphedema. They may also measure you for a compression sleeve and/or glove. ...Read more

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Dr. Khashayar Salartash Dr. Salartash
Surgery - Vascular
25 years in practice
George Washington University Medical School
4
Dr. Michael Miller Dr. Miller
Wound care
32 years in practice
Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine
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Do you think arms sleeves for lymphedema are effective?

Do you think arms sleeves for lymphedema are effective?

Many, Many options: Lymphedema occurs whith compromise of the lymphatic circulation. Lymphatics carry things too thick to be safely carried in arteries and veins like bacteria eaten by white cells and digested food. It is propelled along by normal body movements blockage causes it to back up causing soft tissues/skin deformity. Sleeves are one part of many options including wraps, pumps, and massage. ...Read more

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Dr. Michael Miller Dr. Miller
Wound care
32 years in practice
Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine
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Could I have info about prevention of lymphedema in my arm?

Could I have info about prevention of lymphedema in my arm?

Not really possible: Lymphedema occurs when there is a compromise of the lymphatic circulation. This third circulation (arteries, veins) carries things too thick to be safely carried in arteries and veins like bacteria eaten by white cells and digested food. It is propelled along by normal body movements but contains a thick material called lymph. Blockage causes it to back up causing soft tissues/skin deformity. ...Read more

Dr. Barry Rosen Dr. Rosen
Surgery
30 years in practice
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
7

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Can lymphedema spread from my arms to other parts of my body?

Yes.: Upper extremity lymphedema most commonly occurs following the treatment of breast cancer, which involves lymph node removal +/- radiation. The entire lymphatic system is interconnected and swelling can occur anywhere in the body regardless of which lymphatic region was affected. Though not curable, this does respond to physical therapy. ...Read more

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Dr. Khashayar Salartash Dr. Salartash
Surgery - Vascular
25 years in practice
George Washington University Medical School
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I have had slight swelling in my left arm due to lymphedema. What can I do?

Lymphedema therapy: Manual lymphatic drainage and complete decongestive therapy are the cornerstones of proper lymphedema care. You should seek the opinion of a vascular specialist that has a special interest in lymphedema management. You can learn a lot of the techniques and can begin self management at home once you have been properly treated. ...Read more

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Dr. Khashayar Salartash Dr. Salartash
Surgery - Vascular
25 years in practice
George Washington University Medical School
9

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Can a person massage the lymphedema out of his arm?

Yes: The best treatment for this is manual lymphatic drainage and complete decongestive therapy. This is essentially a massage technique that stimulates the lymphatics and encourages the fluid to move towards the central venous system. Combined with compression this massage then controls the swelling. Please see a physician with special interest in lymph edema and seek this treatment. ...Read more

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Dr. Morris Westfried Dr. Westfried
Dermatology
42 years in practice
Yale University School of Medicine
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What are the recommended exercises for lymphedema of the arm?

Occupational therapy: An occupational therapist can customize a program for you.Compressing a hard rubber ball to work the forearm muscles , biceps and triceps exercises with weights can help move fluid from the upper arm ...Read more

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Dr. Oliver Aalami Dr. Aalami
Surgery - Vascular
19 years in practice
Boston University School of Medicine
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Can a new tumor on my arm cause lymphedema?

Yes: Depending on where the tumor grows and which tissues it involves, it certainly can cause lymphedema of the arm. In particular, if the tumor involves the lymph nodes in the arm pit (axilla), this could Prohibit lymphatic drainage from the arm and cause lymphedema. ...Read more

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Dr. Laura Pak Dr. Pak
Surgery - Vascular
24 years in practice
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
12

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Could shooting heroin in the arm cause arm lymphedema?

Potentially: Lymphedema can result from any type of disruption of lymphatic channels: surgery, trauma, and infection are common causes. If the heroin was injected into tissues rather than into the vein, it can incite an inflammatory reaction which alters lymphatic flow. ...Read more

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Dr. Norman Chideckel Dr. Chideckel
Surgery - Vascular
38 years in practice
State University of New York Downstate Medical Center College of Medicine
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I have lymphedema and my doctors told me it was treatable. Where can I go to find more info. On lymphedema?

Lymphedema: I would investigate the topic on the Internet, as there are numerous patient focused websites dealing with this issue. ...Read more

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Dr. Kenneth Lee Dr. Lee
Surgery - Plastics
17 years in practice
Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine
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I have mild-moderate lymphedema in my arms. What is the best way to get rid of it?

Options: Most lymphedema can be improved with physical therapy/compression. There is a new technique of lymph node transfer that can dramatically improve certain cases. It is microsurgical transfer of nodes to a draining basin to improve symptoms and hopefully grow more channels. Call 321-841-7090 as the institute of microsurgery at orlando health now offers this! ...Read more

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Dr. Ted King Dr. King
Phlebology
36 years in practice
Indiana University School of Medicine
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Can radiation cause arm lymphedema from non-hodgkin's lymphoma?

Can radiation cause arm lymphedema from non-hodgkin's lymphoma?

Yes, although: The non-hodgkins lymphoma can cause lyphedema itself, even without radiation. ...Read more

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Dr. Devon Webster Dr. Webster
Internal Medicine - Oncology
18 years in practice
Stanford University School of Medicine
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I was fitted for a lymphedema sleeve and gauntlet. Is the sleeve supposed to cut off the circulation in my arm and hand?

I was fitted for a lymphedema sleeve and gauntlet. Is the sleeve supposed to cut off the circulation in my arm and hand?

No: The sleeve should be tight but should not cut off your circulation. You may need to start with a larger sleeve and move to a smaller one as your lymphedema improves. Talk to your physical therapist as soon as possible. ...Read more

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Dr. James Isobe Dr. Isobe
Phlebology
50 years in practice
The University of Iowa Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine
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How can I avoid putting pressure on my arm and prevent breast lymphedema?

General care: Lymphedema of the arm is seen following breast procedures (axillary dissection, radiation), and avoiding putting pressure on the arm doesn't prevent the swelling. Avoid scratches, injury of the arm that can result in infection and further damage of the lymphatics. Seek help of a lymphedema trained physical therapist for specific advice. ...Read more

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Dr. Addagada Rao Dr. Rao
Surgery
52 years in practice
Andhra University, Guntur Medical College
18
Dr. Janiece Stewart Dr. Stewart
Sports Medicine
16 years in practice
Rush Medical College
19

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Have lymphedema in right arm and hand. Also trigger finger on that side. Will surgery for the trigger finger make the lymphedema worse?

Have lymphedema in right arm and hand.  Also trigger finger on that side.  Will surgery for the trigger finger make the lymphedema worse?

No: No, surgery for trigger finger should not make the lymphedema worse. The cause of a trigger finger has nothing to do with the lack of draining of the lymph nodes which causes the lymphedema. ...Read more

Dr. Greg Hinson Dr. Hinson
Family Medicine
23 years in practice
Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine
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Diagnosed with shingles 5 days ago; have lymphedema on 1 arm from removal of 30 breast cancer involved lymph nodes - what if shingles spreads to arm?

Secondary infection: Good news is that shingles always follows set patterns. The outbreaks follow the course of a sensory nerve. So, if the outbreak isn't now near the arm, it is very unlikely that it will go there. You can search online for shingles dermatomes to see the patterns. If it does make it to your arm, secondary infection is your biggest concern. Be careful the blisters do not pop and become infected. ...Read more

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