What is Lymphoedema?

April 1, 2023

Part of my job as a footcare practitioner is not only reactive and helping my clients when something happens. But also being proactive and informing the public about diseases/conditions that can affect your legs and feet. So that if you start to notice the symptom you know what to look for and what your next steps are.

Today we’re going to look at one condition in particular which goes by the name of Lymphoedema, which you may or may not have heard about before. To put it simply it’s a long term condition that is chronic and areas of your body that can be affected by it include your arms and legs. One of the main signs of this condition is when you start to notice a heavy swelling. And moving the legs or arms that have swollen may start to begin to tire you, almost as if they are heavier than before.

So what can cause you to suffer from Lymphoedema? Again, keeping it as simple as possible, it stems from issues with your lymphatic system. Which are vessels and glands in your body whose purpose it is to fight off infections. It’s also important to note that there are two different types of this condition.

The first is primary which usually is caused by genetics with your parents or their parents probably had suffered from the condition. The other type is secondary which can be caused by infections, lack of movement to the area of the body affected or by cancer. Typically you will start to notice primary Lymphoedema during adulthood whereas there is no specific time in your life you can expect to suffer from the second type.

So now we know what Lymphedema is, how can it be treated? Well, firstly it’s important to note that at the moment there is no specific cure for the condition. However, thankfully there are treatments for controlling the symptoms. Some of these treatments include changes to your lifestyle and taking care of your skin. Changes can include exercising more and massaging the areas of your body that are most at risk of swelling.

If you want to know more about the best practices when it comes to the health of your legs and feet, including taking care of your skin and the best exercises and stretches to do, let me know. In my role as a Footcare Practitioner, I can advise you on tips to looking after these important areas of your body in order to minimise any discomfort caused by the condition.


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