Lymphedema therapy is long term and treatment is generally required for the rest of your life. Therapy consists of various measures that, when combined, lead to an improvement in symptoms.
A central component of lymphedema therapy is compression treatment. Compression stockings and bandages help relieve fluid stasis. Specially-trained lymph therapists can promote the flow of lymph fluid through manual lymph drainage. In addition to manual lymph drainage and use of compression stockings with a seamless circular knit, an intermittent pneumatic compression pump may also be used in lymphedema therapy.
Special motion therapy with compression: regular motion exercises promote lymph drainage and help relieve lymphatic fluid stasis. The therapist develops an exercise program tailored to the needs of the patient and appropriate for the location of the lymphedema.
There is no medication that will ameliorate lymphedema !!!
The use of diuretics is contraindicated and can lead to serious side effects.
Surgery is rarely an option in the treatment of lymphedema. Only when all other measures, lymph drainage, compression/compression stockings, etc., have failed to produce any results against lymphedema is surgery considered. With a surgical intervention, the physician aims to find ways to improve lymph drainage. To that end, new connections within lymph and venous systems are microsurgically established to reduce lymphatic fluid stasis.
Precautionary measures inlcude all activities that prevent the generation of lymphedema. Any kind of injury to the affected arm or leg must be strictly avoided. This includes injections, blood draws, mosquito bites, sunburns, etc. Even tight clothing can lead to the development of lymphedema.