What is Lymphedema?
Lymphedema is an abnormal accumulation of protein rich fluid that causes swelling.
Most often swelling occurs in the arms or legs and occasionally in the trunk. The condition develops when lymph vessels or lymph nodes are impaired, damaged, or removed. There are two types of lymphedema: primary and secondary. Primary lymphedema is rare and is caused by the absence of certain lymph vessels at birth, or abnormalities in the lymphatic vessels. Secondary lymphedema occurs as a result of a blockage or interruption that alters the flow of lymph through the lymphatic system and can develop from an infection, malignancy, surgery, scar tissue formation, trauma, deep vein thrombosis (blood clot in a vein), radiation, or other cancer treatment.