What is the role of compression therapy in the treatment of lymphedema?

Updated: Mar 30, 2020
  • Author: Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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Answer

Patients should use compression garments continuously during the day. They may be removed at night when the extremity is elevated in bed, but they should be replaced promptly each morning. To encourage compliance, the elastic compression garments must fit appropriately. Garments should be custom fit when the extremity is decompressed, they should be comfortable, and they should not have a tourniquet effect. They should also have graduated compression that increases from distal to proximal on the affected extremity.

King suggested that toe bandaging may be a helpful treatment modality to prevent and manage edema involving the toes. [67]


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