If you cant find the answer to your query on this page, please don't hesitate to contact the clinic.
~ No two human lymphatic systems are the same with regard to number of lymph nodes and vessels. It all depends on how effectively your lymphatic system was functioning prior to treatment taking into account your health history - surgeries, medical procedures, medications, age, food additive consumption, injuries, stress and if have a sedentary lifestyle
MLD is a 'series of treatments'. Generally for health conditions (excluding lymphoedema/lipoedema) we recommend for best results with a treatment plan of 3 initial treatments spaced 48-72 hours between the first and the second and a third treatment 5 days later then follow-up treatments weekly then monthly. The timing and duration will be discussed at the time of your first consultation.
~You may feel tingling/drawing sensation under skin, decreased swelling/puffiness/bloating, increased movement in the joint, increased tiredness/irritability (24-48hrs varies) or increased energy, lighter, decreased pain/ache, clearer eyes.
Note: The benefits of MLD continue well after treatment has finished for up to 48 hours, therefore results may not be noticed/achieved until the following day or after 2-3 treatments as every individual response is different - no two lymphatic systems are the same!
~ If you have had a cancer treatment or surgery and had lymph nodes removed or damaged you may be at risk of lymphoedema. There are also factors that add to this risk:
- extent of surgery and lymph node clearance/dissection
- whether you had radiation treatment and/or chemotherapy
- have obesity and immobility
- recurrent skin/tissue infections or trauma near the affected area
- constriction from tight clothes (bras/underwear) , jewellery, blood pressure tests
~ if you have had cancer treatment or about to and in the 'at risk' category for lymphoedema, then the sooner you are assessed and start treatment the better the outcome. Research shows this early screening and intervention with management will prevent having latent (sub clinical) lymphoedema develop into stage I lymphoedema (clinical).
~ if you are born with or develop primary lymphoedema or lipoedema, a lymphoedema therapist can assess the stage or type, complete combined decongestive therapy, give you advice and education for self management of the affected limb(s) and prescription fit you into a suitable compression garment. The treatment goals are to reduce and control the swelling and help with discomfort to give you a better quality of life.
~ If you have had breast cancer and in the high risk category due to surgery and adjuvant treatment then you can apply for introductory funding to the value of $180 for lymphoedema therapy. You may apply online at Breast Cancer Foundation NZ or collect an application form from the Lymph Clinic.
There is also funding for counselling and physiotherapy rehabilitation post surgery.
Find out more ~ 0800 BC NURSE (0800 226 8773)
- Acute inflammation - caused by an antigen - bacteria, viruses and poisons are contraindicated. Tissues will be red, hot, and painful with congestion accompanied by fever. Lymphatic drainage will push these substances into the lymph channels before the body has a chance to eliminate them. It is best to wait a few days until the condition is not acute and the body has had a chance to clean up the area.
- Acute Phlebitis - inflammation of the vein.
- Malignant tumours/disease – including tumour recurrence or metastases. There is a fear of spreading the cancer. Treated cancers ok to proceed with MLD with oncology and specialists notes regarding treatment received. Note: if palliative then proceeding with MLD to reduce symptoms/oedemas is consented by patient/specialist/GP.
- Acute Thrombosis – can lead to free floating blood clots in the circulatory system. If treated thrombus ok to proceed with MLD
- Congestive heart problems – if the heart is not fully functioning, oedema can be lymphodynamic due to a lack of venous return. Pumping more fluid in the heart it may stress it more than the actual condition.
- Severe arterial circulatory disorders
- Severe neuropathological disorders
- Severe microangiopathological disorders
- Bedridden patients
~ No this is not advised unless it is a compression garment such as a wrap or compression night sleeve that has been prescribed for you by your Lymphoedema therapist and is helpful to assist reduction of the limb size.
~ Cellulitis is a bacterial infection of the skin and underlying tissues. Symptoms include redness and swelling of the affected area, often accompanied by a general feeling of being unwell. The skin of the face, neck, arms and legs is most often involved, however it can occur anywhere on the body. Cellulitis is not directly contagious
~ If you have the above symptoms and think you have cellulitis seek medical help IMMEDIATELY.
~ Treatment is with antibiotics. You must seek medical assistance immediately.
Everything started making sense, and with Lymph Clinic's ongoing support and treatments, I started to believe that I could live with Lymphoedema
After 3 months of treatments I was able to lower my prescription and do away with it completely after 6 months
I haven't had a headache for at least a few days. I'm unsure exactly how long I've been pain free in my head, but it's a break through!
Carol, Central Otago