How is lymphedema treated?
While there is no total cure for lymphedema, there are treatment options. For many patients, at-home exercises, physical therapy, elevation, massage therapy, drainage, and compression garments are very effective. Others suffering from lymphedema whose symptoms are more severe may require surgery. Surgical options may include:
Lymph node transfer: Healthy lymph nodes are taken from another area of the body, and are then transferred to where they are needed. This is a good option for mild to moderate lymphedema. This procedure can take from 4 to 8 hours.
Microsurgical treatment: This option can reduce swelling, making lymphedema much more manageable.
Lymphatic bypass: Lymphatic vessels are connected and drained into the body’s venous system.