Lymphedema is caused by a problem with the lymph vessels and/or lymph nodes. It can affect any part of the body, arms, legs, trunk or face. It involves swelling that, as it increases, can limit the use of a limb, gradual thickening and hardening of the skin and increased risk of infection.
Lymphedema cannot be cured, but it can be controlled. The treatment, Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT), can reduce swelling and maintain reduction. Five components are Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD), multilayered compression wrapping (after MLD), decongestive exercises, skin care and home management.