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Posted on 10-11-2017
Lymphedema Therapy From Your Betterndorf Chiropractor
Lymphedema is a condition that occurs when the fluid that usually moves throughout the body's tissues gets stopped up in one place. It causes swelling, increased risk of infection, and other problems. Absolute Balance Chiropractic is proud to be able to offer lymphedema therapy from Wendy Hermanson, a National Lymphedema Network Member, here in Bettendorf, IA. She is also a well-trained Oncology Massage therapist who is a valuable health professional just like your chiropractor.
What is Lymphedema?
Fluid typically moves throughout the body via two main methods: the arteries and veins, and the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a part of the body's immune system, as well as being responsible for collecting fluid that seeps from blood vessels and cells. Lymphedema occurs when the drainage system gets blocked in some way, often through the removal of lymphatic drainage vessels or lymph nodes.
Lymphedema is usually referred to as either primary or secondary, with the latter being much more common. Primary lymphedema is due to a congenital defect in the lymphatic system, and can appear at any age but is relatively rare. Secondary lymphedema is an unfortunately common side effect of cancer treatment surgeries that remove lymph nodes or damage the lymphatic system in another way.
How is Lymphedema Treated?
For patients with lymphedema, pain management and reducing swelling are the major goals. Reducing the size of the affected limb relieves pressure on the skin, which may otherwise crack or bleed. It also improves cosmetic appearance and often provides pain management when the pain is due to the fluid buildup itself.
The gold standard for lymphedema treatment is called Complete Decongestive Therapy, or CDT. It involves manual lymph drainage, which is a type of massage, in combination with compression bandaging. The massage moves the fluid within the affected part of the body and improves drainage. In the beginning, this massage therapy is used up to five times a week, and compression bandages help prevent the fluid from re-accumulating in the area.
Reducing swelling remains a life-long goal of lymphedema patients, but once the situation has been improved by manual drainage, it is not necessary quite so often. Patients continue to use compression bandages or garments, and start doing approved exercises. Skincare is also an essential part of long-term lymphedema care in order to prevent infections and other skin complications.
Lymphedema Therapy from Absolute Balance Chiropractic
Here at Absolute Balance Chiropractic in Bettendorf, IA, we believe that the skills of a chiropractor can be complemented by the skills of an Oncology Massage therapist such as Wendy Hermanson. As a National Lymphedema Network Member, you can rest assured that she is trained to handle this unfortunate complication of cancer treatment through the best possible methods. Call (563) 332-6036 to make an appointment. Be sure to ask about our new patient special!
When did you first hear about lymphedema?
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