This is a 4-minute read.
One of the first things a patient learns after a lymphedema diagnosis is how to use compression bandages and garments. These compression wraps temporarily provide much-needed relief of lymphedema symptoms like inflammation and swelling.
Although effective, compression bandages are just one aspect of successful lymphedema management This complex and chronic condition needs a much more robust and comprehensive treatment plan incorporating techniques like lymphatic massage and pneumatic compression for lymphedema relief.
A common and effective type of lymphedema massage is manual lymphatic drainage (MLD). This is a specialized type of sequential skin-stretching massage that encourages the healthy movement of lymphatic fluid.
MLD shouldn’t be confused with an ordinary or deep tissue massage, which are types that primarily focus on muscle pain and tension relief. By contrast, MLD targets lymphatic fluid movement and should only be performed by a trained lymphedema therapist.
Medical research shows evidence that massage for lymphedema can also be combined with other therapies like exercise and compression to increase the overall benefit. Compression for lymphedema creates a firm but gentle pressure-and-release force that stimulates fluid movement.
Pneumatic compression is a form of machine-assisted compression that alleviates lymph fluid buildup and helps the fluid drain properly through the lymphatics. Patients can incorporate a lymphatic drainage machine into their daily routine, which relieves inflammation, swelling, and pain.
Lymphedema pumps provide machine-assisted fluid movement that supports a patient’s long-term lymphatic health. These devices are comfortable to use at home and reduce lymphedema symptoms significantly.
An example of this type of pump is the Lympha Press pneumatic compression device, which is backed by scientific studies showing its effectiveness. One study found that 85% of users said it reduced their discomfort, and 94% would recommend it to someone else based on their own positive experience with using it.
Complete decongestive therapy (CDT) is often called the “gold standard” of lymphedema treatment because it combines the significant benefits of MLD with other beneficial treatments like compression therapy, decongestive exercises, and skincare. As its name indicates, it’s a comprehensive type of therapy.
A CDT plan is developed with the help of a lymphedema professional under a doctor’s care. Each person’s lymphedema treatment plan should be thoughtfully developed using a holistic approach that considers their stage of lymphedema and total health picture.
Compression and massage for lymphedema, plus using a pneumatic pump and creating a comprehensive treatment plan, all combine to create an effective approach to treating this chronic disease. Although there is no cure for it so far, patients can thrive while living with lymphedema.
If you’re a lymphedema professional or patient, please review options for innovative compression pump home therapy equipment from Lympha Press. Our equipment supports the best possible outcomes for people with lymphedema.