Cancer de Mama Clinic Update
Cancer de Mama runs a yearly clinic in La Penita, Nayarit and Guadalajara, Mexico. With the help of volunteers, Cancer de Mama provides free prostheses and bras, funds medical expenses, offers after-surgery counseling, physical therapy, and provides wigs, scarves and hats for Mexican women who suffer from breast cancer and don't have resources. The next clinic is Feb 2019. Read More
Compression T & Crop Top Update
New Size Chart
Wear Ease Shapewear is a line of sewn garments specifically designed to help manage swelling resulting from surgery or lymphedema. All shapewear items (780, 785, 910, 912, 915, 970 and 1000) are constructed of a sturdy and compressive fabric (80% nylon/20% spandex) that feels cool and comfortable to the touch. These garments were designed to provide maximum comfort and compression that results in 100% compliance when fitted properly. All styles in this group are designed and sewn with pockets to hold a lightweight or leisure breast form or a swell spot.
The level of compression provided by Wear Ease garments depends on each individual fit. Providing compression with the fit of a garment for the girth of a torso is more difficult than fitting a limb.
A compression level within the range of 10-16 mmhg may be achieved. If the garment is any tighter than this, it will not be comfortable and it won't be worn (per discussions with lymphedema therapists and designers).
Wear Ease compression shapewear should fit snug and comfortably to ensure 100% compliance.
If the garment feels tight, then the next larger size should be selected. If the garment fits loose then the next smaller size should be selected.
Wear Ease compression shapewear are sewn garments and can be worn to bed at night to ensure continual compression. Items that are constructed of circular knit cannot be worn to bed because they may result in the effects of a tourniquet.
Wear Ease Shapewear is a good value:
- Supportive and quality fabric
- Designed specifically for the post-surgical and lymphatic needs
- Practical garment for air travel, exercise and bed
Each person’s limb is unique and responds differently to compression; your age, the condition of your skin and tissues, and your ability to apply and remove a garment are important considerations in garment choice. Knowing the many options available and the differences between the various garment brands will help you find the best garment for your limb. Ready- made garments are generally a good starting point if your limb length and shape are fairly standard. If you have moderate or severe lymphedema, or if the shape of your limb is more bulbous in one or more areas, or your limb is extra short or long, you may need to be fitted for a custom made garment.
If you do not wear a daytime garment, the benefits of the intensive treatment will be lost, so fit and comfort are important. Your lymphedema therapist and fitter must be willing to explore options with you. The therapist should also periodically check the garment fit and effectiveness, and modify the system as needed, to ensure the best outcome. If a circular garment is not firm enough to control the swelling, you may also want to consider a different garment type or compression level for specific activities such as exercise or gardening. Remember to replace your garments at least every 6 months to ensure you are getting the prescribed compression.
Healthy Lifestyle:A healthy diet and exercise are important for overall good health.
- Maintain optimal weight through a healthy diet and exercise to significantly lower risk of lymphedema
- Gradually build up the duration and intensity of any activity of exercise. Review the Exercise Position paper.*
- Take frequent rest periods during activity to allow for recovery.
- Monitor the at-risk area during and after activity for change in size, shape, tissue, texture, soreness, heaviness, or firmness.Skin Care:
make sure that your skin is in good condition
- Keep your at-risk body part clean and dry.
- Apply moisturizer daily to prevent chapping/chafing of skin.
- Pay attention to nail care and do not cut cuticles.
- Protect exposed skin with sunscreen and insect repellent.
- Use care with razors to avoid nicks and skin irritation.
Medical Check-Ups:Find a certified lymphedema therapist (CTL)*
- Review your individual situation, get screened for lymphedema, and discuss risk factors with your CLT.
- Ask your CLT or healthcare professional if compression garments for air travel and strenuous activity are appropriate for you.
- If a compression garment is recommended, make sure it is properly fitted and you understand the wear, care and replacement guildlines.
- Set up a follow-up schedule based on your needs with your CLT.
- Report any changes in your at-risk body part to your CLT.Infection Education: Know the signs of infection and what to do if you suspect you have one.
- Signs of infection: rash, itching, redness, pain, increased skin temperature, increased swelling, fever, or flu-like symptoms.
- If any of these symptoms occur, contact your healthcare professional immediately for early treatment of possible infection.
- If a scratch or puncture to your skin occurs, wash it with soap and water, apply topical antibiotics, and observe for signs of infection.
- Keep a small first aid kit with you when traveling.
Try to Avoid Possible Triggers
Injury or Trauma
- Wear gloves while doing activities that may cause skin injury (washing dishes, gardening, using chemicals like detergent).
- Try to avoid punctures (eg, injections and blood draws).
- Wear loose jewelry and clothing.
- Avoid carrying a heavy bag or purse over the at-risk limb
- Try to avoid blood pressure cuffs on the at-risk limb.
- Avoid exposure to extreme cold, which can cause rebound swelling or chapping of skin.
- Avoid prolonged (>15 min.) exposure to heat, particularly hot tubs and saunas.
Prolonged InactivityAt-risk for leg lymphedema?
Please note: These guidelines are meant to help reduce your risk of developing lymphedema and are NOT prevention guidelines. Because there is little research about risk reduction, many of these use a common-sense approach based on the body's anatomy and knowledge gained from decades of clinical experience by experts in the field. Risk reduction should always be individualized by a certified lymphedema therapist and healthcare professional.For a full list of the NLN's risk reduction practices, please see our website: www.lymphnet.org/riskreduction* To review the NLN's other position papers and find a CLT in your area: www.lymphnet.org(2016, Spring). Healthy Habits for Patients at Risk for Lymphedema. Canada's Lymphedema Magazine Pathways, (Spring 2016), pp. 13
- Avoid prolonged standing or sitting by moving and changing position throughout the day.
- Wear properly, fitted footwear and hosiery.