“My leg was so swollen, I admit, I had my doubts the therapy would work. But after just two weeks, the swelling was down so much my shoes were too big. I’m in awe of the treatment.”
— David Boulton, Townshend
Any injury or surgery that compromises your lymph nodes can cause an uncomfortable swelling most often in your arms or legs known as Lymphedema. Half of all breast cancer survivors must deal with this condition as a result of their cancer treatment. Others have a congenital tendency, or develop it after other surgery or radiation treatment.
The bad news is that Lymphedema is always chronic, and physical therapists with the special training required to treat Lymphedema are few and far between.
The good news is that Grace Cottage has two of these therapists on staff. Abby Abbott and Cindy Kenyon can provide the gentle massage known as “lymphatic drainage,” and they can teach patients various techniques for living with this condition with the least discomfort possible.
Lymphedema is caused when there is a blockage in the lymphatic system, a series of lymph nodes and vessels that carry fluid through the body to remove impurities and infections. When lymph nodes are removed or damaged, it’s common for the lymphatic fluid to build up, causing swelling.
In the earliest stage, Lymphedema may be experienced as a swollen limb that feels heavy, with skin that feels tight. It’s important to consult your medical provider at this stage because many things can cause swelling.
If Lymphedema is your diagnosis, rest assured that help is available.
As with all rehabilitation services, you will need a written referral. Ask your physician or primary care provider to refer you to Grace Cottage Rehabilitation Services for an initial evaluation. We can receive referrals in person or via fax. Once you have your referral, call us to schedule your evaluation. Once evaluated, your therapist will recommend a series of appointments. While ultimately your responsibility to confirm your insurance coverage, we will gladly assist you in understanding your coverage as best we can.
For more information, or for assistance in scheduling your first appointment, call 365-3637.