Lymphedema surveillance programs

When lymph nodes are removed, lymph fluid may not drain properly. If lymph fluid builds up, it can cause swelling in the area being treated. Lymphedema usually occurs in an arm or leg but can also affect other parts of the body. Patients who have had surgery followed by radiation therapy are more at risk. It can also be a late effect, appearing months or even years after treatment. Lymphedema is easier to manage if the condition is treated early. The main signs of lymphedema include swelling or heaviness of the affected area, which may come and go. Our surveillance program monitors for early signs of lymphedema both pre- and post-surgery for a year. These programs are available for breast, melanoma and head & neck patients.

Other common effects found in patients

  • Chemo induced peripheral neuropathy
  • Fatigue            
  • Generalized weakness
  • Loss of range of motion or difficulty moving
  • Difficulties with activities of daily living/return to work

Treatments available

  • Cold laser therapy
  • Complete Decongestive Therapy for lymphedema
  • Personalized strengthening and range of motion program to address individual needs
  • Balance training
  • Endurance training

Ribbons is the region’s only outpatient clinic that is devoted solely to cancer rehabilitation where a comfortable environment is provided so that patients can focus on healing without having to worry about his/her body image. With Certified Lymphedema Therapists encompassing both physical and occupational therapy, your patients can be seen in a timely manner.

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