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In the Trenches with Lymphedema: Wound Care in Lymphedema Patients

Janet Wolfson, PT, CLWT, CWS, CLT-LANA

Working with lymphedema patients, indeed patients with any type of edema, can be very challenging for clinicians because of the diagnosis and population, as well as the need for lymphology training across the disciplines involved in the care plan.

This webinar will differentiate types of edema, identify markers that should contraindicate or modify complex lymphatic therapy, and provide a path for the interdisciplinary team to safely navigate treatment for patients with lymphedema, including patients with wounds.


Lymphedema and Wound Management

Differential Diagnosis Tool

The differential diagnosis of lymphedema includes both primary and secondary lymphedema, as well as lipedema. Management of lymphedema consists of compression therapy, manual lymph drainage, and other measures to reduce fluid buildup in the extremities. It is crucial for health care providers to understand the causes and risks of lymphedema and to have ready access to evidence-based methods for lymphedema prevention, diagnosis, and management.

Quick Facts – Lymphedema and Wound Care

This two-page fact sheet was created to support staff education on the lymphatic system and lymphedema. The print-friendly format is perfect for posting on the bulletin board or distributing to your nursing staff at in-service.

How Much Do You Know About Lymphedema Diagnosis and Management?

Take our 10-question quiz to find out!

Lymphedema and Wound Care: Important Terms to Know

Cellulitis: A common bacterial skin infection that appears as a swollen, red area of skin that feels hot and tender; also known as lymphangitis. Treatment should begin promptly to avoid having the infection spread rapidly and become life-threatening.

Complete decongestive therapy (CDT): The system of lymphedema treatment that includes manual lymph drainage (MLD), compression techniques, decongestive exercise, and self-care training.

Congenital lymphedema: A form of primary lymphedema that is present from birth; also known as Milroy’s disease or Nonne-Milroy disease.


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Managing Lymphedema: Essential Strategies for Wound Care Providers

As health care professionals, we see patients with lymphedema every day. However, do we know how to manage lymphedema? Are we confident in…

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Complications Associated with Lymphedema (and How to Prevent Them)

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Lymphedema and Wound Management

Lymphedema effects 3-5 million individuals in the United States and, while there are treatment options, there is currently no cure. The lymphatic system uses lymphatic vessels to absorb, transfer and filter fluids and return them to general circulation. When the lymphatic system becomes obstructed or experiences a structural change, localized edema distal to the site of the structural deficiency develops.

Wound care professionals encounter lymphedema every day. Watch this brief overview video to learn more about chronic wounds and the educational resources made available on lymphedema and wound management.

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