Metro West Post Cancer Lymphedema Massage
Lymphedema is a condition where the extremities become swollen as a result of damage to the body's lymphatic system—particularly the lymph nodes. The lymphatic system, a part of the immune system, is a network of vessels that course throughout the body to collect excess fluid as well as waste products. Because these excess fluids and waste products are filtered through the lymph nodes, if they become damaged, it can lead to a buildup in various parts of the body, resulting in swelling. It's not just cancer-treating surgery that can cause lymphedema to occur. Lymphedema should not be confused with other types of edema resulting from venous insuﬃciency (leaky or obstructed veins), cardiac conditions like heart failure or sleep apnea, kidney failure, or other inflammatory processes. These conditions are not lymphedema and are generally treated diﬀerently.
Radiation therapy, while effective at destroying cancer cells, can sometimes damage nearby healthy tissue, such as the lymphatic system, leading to lymphedema.
The cancer cells themselves can "block lymphatic vessels," resulting in lymphedema. Tumors growing near a lymph node or lymph vessel could enlarge enough to block the flow of the lymph fluid. The major contraindications to lymphedema massage are acute congestive heart failure, acute renal failure, active blood clots, active infection, active bleeding and undiagnosed cancer. This treatment is a gentle noninvasive therapy, the lymphedema massage will help with the swelling and build up fluids in various parts of the body and unblock lymphatic vessels.