What is included in long-term follow-up of patients with lymphedema?

Updated: Mar 24, 2021
  • Author: Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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Answer

Once discharged from the hospital, the patient should be seen regularly in the outpatient clinic. Patients must wear compression garments continuously for 4-6 weeks; dependency on the involved extremity may be gradually increased at the discretion of the treating physician.

Once he or she has healed to physician satisfaction, the patient may return to a normal routine of elevation at night and compression garment therapy during the day.

Follow-up visits should include documentation of circumferential measurement or water displacement of the affected and contralateral extremities, as well as photographic documentation.

When staging procedures, allow approximately 3 months between procedures to allow complete healing of the initial operative site.


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