Due to hurricane damage, the Havelock location is closed until further notice. Havelock therapists Hannah Zhang, Sarah Hall and Judy Hickes are available to see patients at the New Bern location. Please call the New Bern location at (252) 636-9800 to discuss your care.

Who is most likely to need lymphedema physical therapy?

Lymphedema Physical Therapy

Think of the Michelin Man. A cartoon person with puffy arms, hands, legs and feet. This image isn’t something that you ever thought might apply to you, but it’s a pretty good description of what can happen when people develop lymphedema. 

Lymphedema is a condition that occurs when the body’s lymphatic system is damaged or blocked, and its most common symptom is swelling in the affected arm or leg. The secondary form of lymphedema is also common. Medical research shows that secondary lymphedema affects about 1 in every 1,000 Americans. 

Physical therapy can be an effective treatment option for people who develop lymphedema. Physical therapists can even help you learn if you’re at greater risk of developing this condition. 

Three groups of people who are more likely to need lymphedema physical therapy:

  1. Cancer patients — Cancer is caused by mutated cells growing uncontrollably in various parts of the body. Eventually, this condition results in masses in the body called tumors. Tumors that are located in or near the lymphatic system can grow so large that they restrict the normal flow of lymph. 
  1. Patients who have radiation therapy — Radiation therapy is often used to help treat many types of cancer. Yet it can also have some side effects. For one thing, it can cause scarring in the lymph nodes and vessels through which lymph travels. Radiation treatments can also trigger inflammation that blocks lymph nodes and vessels. 
  1. People who have certain surgeries — Cancer and other issues may cause doctors to recommend a surgery to remove a lymph node. This type of surgery is often done to check for breast cancer. Surgery to repair blood vessels in your arms or legs may also damage lymph vessels. Both types of surgery can lead to lymphedema.

Peak Performance offers effective physical therapy for lymphedema

Need to find physical therapy for your lymphedema? Our Peak Performance Sports & Physical Therapy team offers the type of help you’re searching for. We can do a free screening to confirm that you have lymphedema and to learn how it’s affecting you. This knowledge allows our physical therapists to build you a personalized treatment plan that’s designed to fit your unique needs. We can even help you treat lymphedema via a virtual therapy appointment that you do from home. 

Contact us today for more information about how we can treat lymphedema or to schedule your initial appointment to start addressing this condition.