Stories about the people and innovations taking place at MossRehab.
What is Lymphedema?
Lymphedema is a buildup of fluid in tissues cause by damage during surgery, radiation, infection or trauma that causes swelling in a specific part of the body. For breast cancer patients, swelling is typically in the arm on the same side cancer. While its onset may begin years after breast cancer diagnosis, those who undergo surgery or radiation therapy are at lifetime risk.
Breast cancer survivors experiencing pain and issues related to arms and shoulders often don’t seek medical attention, expecting a lower quality of life and often just feeling lucky to be alive. However, MossRehab cancer rehabilitation experts can offer therapies that help manage breast cancer-related conditions, especially lymphedema.
Decongestive Therapy Treats Lymphedema
Decongestive Lymphatic Therapy is the gold standard of lymphedema treatment that combines meticulous skincare, gentle exercise, compression therapy, and specialized manual lymph drainage massage.
Breaking down the four basic elements of the Decongestive Lymphatic Therapy:
Symptoms of Lymphedema
Cancer survivors feeling tightness or heaviness in the arms or noticing jewelry or clothing doesn’t fit should talk to their oncologists. Treating lymphedema at its earliest stages when it is mild can stop its progress into severe stages where swelling is more pronounced along with skin changes.
In its relentless pursuit of new solutions, MossRehab received a grant from the Albert Einstein Society to develop a program to screen newly-diagnosed breast cancer survivors for lymphedema. As pioneers of innovative technology, MossRehab can detect swelling months before its visible so therapy can begin in the early stages of the condition.
Read a transcript of the MossRehabpodcast on how decongestive therapy helps treat lymphedema here.
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