Welcome to Lymphedema Awareness 2023!
Presented by the Academy of Lymphatic Studies
It is the beginning of 2023! Changes and resolutions always seem to be on the forefront of everyone’s mind around the New Year. One may choose to better their life by decluttering space, or starting a healthy regiment of exercise and diet, and perhaps by beginning a new journey of expanding the mind through education. Whatever the focus is for each person at the beginning of the year, it is important to remember that it takes dedication, and practice to fulfill those dreams and visions!
However, today the focus is on expanding the mind. How can someone do that in the world of Lymph? Simply put, they can strive to increase their education and knowledge of the lymphatic system, lymphedema management, post operative swelling and healing, and more!
In today’s letter, lets discover a pathway to achieving goals in lymphedema awareness!
What is the Lymphatic System?
The lymphatic system is a network of vessels and nodes that are responsible for draining the substances that can not be drained, or reabsorbed by the blood. This happens via transporting lymphatic loads back to venous circulation. The substances that make up Lymphatic Loads in the body are, water, proteins, cell fragments, and long chain fatty acids.
What is Lymphedema?
Lymphedema is an abnormal accumulation of water and proteins in the interstitial tissue spaces. This accumulation happens due to a mechanical insufficiency of the lymphatic system caused by either disease from trauma, or genetics that cause the lymphatic system to not function normally. With a loss of optimal functioning, the system is unable to transport the lymphatic loads back to venous circulation and results in a high protein edema building in the tissues which leads to swelling.
How can a person with lymphedema seek treatment?
Once a patient has received a diagnosis of Lymphedema from their healthcare provider, they can seek treatment in Complete Decongestive Therapy from a Certified Lymphedema Therapist, which is considered the Gold Standard of Treatment for Lymphedema worldwide. A Certified Lymphedema Therapist or CLT is trained in a minimum of 135 hours of education on the lymphatic system, manual lymphatic drainage, bandaging and compression, exercise, skin care, and patient education. Utilizing a specific method of treatment, a person can achieve results that reduce swelling, break up fibrotic tissue, and work to improve the quality of life.
Where can I learn to treat Lymphedema?
Schools that specialize in training programs for Manual Lymph Drainage and Complete Decongestive Therapy that recognized by the Lymphology Association of North America (LANA), meet the requirements to train therapists. Therapists qualified to take these courses are Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Registered Nurses, and Massage Therapists to name a few.
The Academy of Lymphatic Studies (ACOLS) offers different educational delivery methods for either in person training, or hybrid training within the standards set forth by LANA, with a goal of educating quality practitioners.
Whatever interests you in learning more about the lymphatic system and providing treatment for those suffering from Lymphedema, or post operative swelling, options are available for you to achieve your goals in 2023 by attending an ACOLS course near you!
Follow ACOLS on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter! Or reach out to the admissions department at 772-589-3355. Also check out a list of courses on the website
Lymphatic System Image https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/lymph-nodes
Lymphedema Image https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/lymphedema/symptoms-causes/syc-20374682