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Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth

 
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Lymphedema 

The Frances and Frank Turrella Lymphedema Center at Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth

What is lymphedema?

Lymphedema is swelling of a body part (arm, face, neck, trunk, genitalia, legs) resulting from abnormal accumulation of lymph fluid. Lymphedema can develop when a lymphatic network is deficient, damaged or missing. Left untreated, this stagnant, protein-rich fluid reduces oxygen availability, interferes with wound healing and provides a medium for bacteria.

Are there different types of lymphedema?

Primary lymphedema is congenital or hereditary malformations of the lymph vessels or nodes. It can be present at birth, develop at the onset of puberty (praecox) or in adulthood (tarda).

Secondary lymphedema is acquired as a result of surgery, radiation over lymph nodes and vessels, trauma, infection or chronic venous insufficiency. If you notice swelling, it is very important to seek immediate medical advice. Early diagnosis and treatment improve the reduction and control of lymphedema.

What do we provide at The Frances and Frank Turrella Lymphedema Center at Baylor Fort Worth?

The most beneficial and non-invasive treatment for lymphedema is Complete Decongestive Therapy, or CDT. CDT is not a cure for lymphedema but the treatment will reduce swelling in the affected area, help manage the condition and improve quality of function.

CDT consists of four components which are tailored to each patient:

  • Manual lymph drainage, or MLD, with gentle manual strokes improves lymph flow out of the congested area and into the trunk toward the heart
  • Compression bandaging with padding and short stretch bandages; fitting for compression garments
  • Therapeutic exercises to decrease swelling and increase function
  • Patient and family education of self-care and follow-through includes information on the lymph system, precautions and components of the CDT treatments
Is a physician referral required?

Yes. Insurance coverage for treatment is decided by your individual plan. Baylor All Saints Medical Center will provide assistance in pre-authorization for this outpatient service.

How do I contact The Frances and Frank Turrella Lymphedema Center at Baylor Fort Worth?

Contact the Lymphedema Center by calling 817.922.2530.