Lymphoedema - Assessment and Treatment

Assessment

Any treatment programme starts with an individual assessment. This is usually a series of questions about your general health and includes questions which are specific to your particular needs.

Then one or sometimes two therapists will measure your affected and your non-affected limbs. This gives you an accurate measurement of how affected you are.

It is sometimes useful at this stage to take photographs of your affected areas – this will only be done with your express permission and copies will not be held on any computer. You will be provided with a copy for your own records.

A full assessment can take anywhere between one to two hours.

Treatment

The treatment of lymphoedema falls roughly into two categories:- Phase One which is an intensive treatment period for reduction of the swollen area and Phase Two which is a maintenance phase intended to keep the area as reduced as possible after the intensive Phase One.

Both phases follow the four cornerstones of Lymphoedema treatment as described in the Macmillan Report on lymphoedema Treatment in 1984. Skincare; Exercises; bandaging (or compression) and Manual Lymph Drainage. (MLD)

Phase One: Is an intensive period of MLD and Bandaging. Daily sessions for 2 to 4 weeks depending on the circumstances. Exercises and skincare are an integral part of this phase.

Phase Two: Once the situation has been improved in Phase One a maintenance programme must be instigated. This phase will be different from person to person and can be anything from once weekly to once monthly appointments of MLD with compression garments to supply the compression required.

It is important to understand that all lymphoedema treatment regime's must be individually prescribed. No two are the same!

Anne Schreiber

Anne Schreiber

Clinical Director of 56 London Road Clinic and has worked with lymphoedema and other physiotherapy patients for over 15 years. She has run her private practice in Dorset for the past 12 years and was the Senior therapist for An Arm & A Leg Ltd. – an inpatient lymphoedema service. She has been called as an Independent Witness for her expertise in oedema. Her thorough knowledge of the condition and its difficulties inspired her to found the London Road Clinic. Anne is also acting as the current secretary for MLD UK and has been partaking in ongoing research within the United Kingdom and on the continent.

Anne has put together a team of Lymphoedema Specialists, Lymphoedema Nurses, Physiotherapists, a Chiropodist, a Psychologist and others to enable patients to have access to all of these specialties under one roof.

The London Road Clinic is happy to accept NHS and Private referrals to any of the specialists. NHS referrals must be PCT approved for payments.