If you go through Complete Decongestive Therapy or CDT, this is a typical program that will be modified to fit your unique situation.

  • Daily/weekly visits for evaluation, treatment, progression, modification and measurements by the therapist.
  • Meticulous skin to reduce risk of any infection.  Treatment of wounds if needed or in coordination with local wound care centers.  Education on proper nail care.
  • Manual lymph drainage, a gentle, manual treatment technique which improves the activity of intact lymph vessels by mild mechanical stretches on the wall of lymph collectors.  This treatment is performed by the certified therapist in the clinic and usually takes 30-45 minutes depending on the severity of the lymphedema.  Patients attend therapy 3-5 times a week for this manual drainage of the lymph fluid into adjacent, functioning lymph systems.  This will include treatment of the arms, legs, chest, trunk and/ or groin.
  • Compression bandaging is performed immediately after manual lymph drainage.  Compression is applied by the therapist using many layers of minimally elastic cotton bandages to increase skin and tissue pressure and to prevent the re-accumulation of fluid in the extremity.  Bandages are not covered by insurance and must be purchased by the patient.  Once the extremity (arm, leg, body or face) is completely decongested, the patient will then be measured and fitted with an appropriate compression garment.
  • Other treatment options are included as appropriate and can be discussed on your first visit.
  • Therapeutic exercises to accelerate the lymph flow as well as strengthening and flexibility to improve your overall success.
  • Instruction in a home maintenance program to prepare the individual for caring for themselves as independently as possible after completing treatment.

 Successful treatment of lymphedema requires commitment and dedication of both the patient and therapist to the therapy program.   Please understand that this program is not a cure but treatment to help you control your swelling and set you up on a maintenance program.  The patient will be responsible for keeping their condition under control for the rest of their life.  Reduction of edema not only improves the quality of life, but also decreases the incidence of severe other complications like infections.  When you are treated at CARES Health Services, you and/ or your family have to actively participate while your are in treatment and after.  
Although insurance companies cover PT/OT services according to the plans policy, compression bandages and garments are usually not covered.  Compression is an essential part of your treatment and getting the right kind of compression is vital.  It will, however, be an out of pocket expense.  

Useful links:

We have been treating lymphedema and other swelling at CARES since 2005 (as well as years before CARES opened).  Read below if you want to know how we treat it...BUT... don't let that overwhelm you.  If you fit into one of the categories above, make an appointment to come in and see us.  We let you know on the first visit what your individual program will include.

How do I know if I have Lymphedema?

If you have Chronic Edema or swelling that will not go way and medicine no longer controls it or you would like to try to reduce your medicine.

If your swelling has started to harden, your arms or legs feel bulky, heavy, uncomfortable and/or have developed a cosmetic deformity. 

If you have a wound that is not healing well and/or repeated episodes of infections, such as cellulitis, associated with the swelling.

You have been swelling your whole life.  Occasionally a person may be born with Lymphedema, or have it for no known reason.

If you have swelling and have had any of the following, you might have Lymphedema:

  • Injury, scarring, or removal of lymph nodes
  • Radiation and /or surgery on the lymph nodes
  • Traumatic injury or severe burn
  • Long term chronic venous insufficiency (poor circulation in the legs)
  • Multiple wounds and/ or chronic infections
  • After a blood clot (post-thrombotic disorder)

 All of our treating therapists have had advanced training in the treatment of Lymphedema and have been certified to provide Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT).  CDT is the most effective and least invasive approach recommended by physicians for the treatment of Lymphedema.​

Call Us:  2513444212