Compression Garments for Lymphedema Management
Presented by the Academy of Lymphatic Studies
Lymphedema is a condition characterized as a chronic and progressive swelling that occurs when the lymphatic system, which is responsible for removing excess fluid from the body, is damaged or disrupted. The mechanical insufficiency of the lymphatic system can lead to fluid buildup, causing swelling in various body parts, such as the arms, legs, or even the face. Multiple factors, including surgery, radiation therapy, injury, infection, or genetics, can cause lymphedema.
An effective way to manage lymphedema after completing decongestive therapy is by using lymphedema garments, also known as compression garments. The design of the garments is to apply external compression to the affected area, which helps to stimulate lymphatic flow and reduce swelling. Many types of lymphedema garments are available, each designed for specific areas of the body and the severity of the condition.
Compression stockings are one of the most common types of lymphedema garments designed for use on the legs. They are typically made of a lightweight, stretchy material that gently compresses the affected area. Compression stockings can help to reduce swelling, assist in improving circulation and prevent the formation of blood clots.
Arm sleeves are another type of lymphedema garment designed for use on the arms. They are similar in design to compression stockings but made to fit the arm more snugly. Arm sleeves can help reduce swelling and discomfort in the arm and can also prevent lymphedema from developing in the first place.
Compression gloves are another type of lymphedema garment designed for use on the hands—gloves of a lightweight, breathable material that gently compresses the fingers and palms. Compression gloves can help reduce swelling and discomfort in the hands and can also prevent lymphedema from developing in the first place.
Specialized lymphedema garments are also available for areas affected by lymphedema, such as the torso and face. These garments are designed to provide targeted compression to specific areas, helping to reduce swelling and improve lymphatic flow.
When choosing lymphedema garments, you must work with a healthcare professional who can help you select the fitting garment for your specific needs. They can help you determine the appropriate level of compression and fit and can also guide how to use and care for your garments properly.
Overall, lymphedema garments can effectively assist in the management of lymphedema and work to improve the quality of life for those living with the condition.
The Lymphedema Store, a division of the Academy of Lymphatic Studies, offers a variety of options for patients and healthcare providers on lymphedema garments. Click here to check out the store and make sure to use code NL23 for a 20% discount!