Lymphedema is a chronic debilitating disease, and breast cancer patients who have undergone axillary lymph node dissection, possibly with radiation, are at risk of developing lymphedema. Wearing a lymphedema medical alert bracelet will warn health care providers not to use medication or invasive treatments that could actually cause or aggravate existing lymphedema.
For most lymphedema patients, treatment usually is made up of about twelve sessions of physical therapy for multi-layer bandaging. Multilayer Bandaging must be done by a licensed physical therapist, where the repeated application of loose-fitting bandaging improves fluid flow and a reduction in the size of the affected limb. There are also other devices which can be used to help stimulate fluid flow as a therapy option. You are not going to restore damaged lymph vessels, but the condition can be managed with different treatment plans.
What is Lymphedema?
The lymphatic system is made up of lymph fluid, lymphatic vessels, lymph nodes, spleen, tonsils and bone marrow, and it plays an important role in the elimination of toxic waste from tissues. Fluid is pumped through this system, which means that a sluggish lymphatic system is often due to lack of exercise. When the body is fighting off an infection, the lymph glands become swollen because they are trying to clean the system. Lymphatic obstruction can cause lymphedema, which is an abnormal buildup of fluid.
Primary lymphedema is caused by the absence of certain lymph vessels, or abnormalities in the lymphatic vessels while secondary lymphedema is the blockage which alters the flow of lymph through the lymphatic system. The problem can flare up in the space of a few days or over the years, and you will know there is a problem when you discover swelling in the arms, legs or fingers. Fortunately prompt treatment will prevent complications setting in.
Lymphedema Medical Alert Bracelet Engraved with Medical Information
The purpose of the Lymphedema medical ID bracelet, should you require prompt medical attention, is to protect cancer survivors from receiving treatment to the affected arm that could then trigger the onset of lymphedema or make the existing lymphedema even worse. Wearing the medical alert bracelet will ensure medical personnel don’t go to the engorged limb to draw blood.
Start Treatment as Soon as Possible
People who have learned that they have lymphedema want to know how and when treatment should start. Ideally it should start even before the swelling appears. This is also the time to start looking at a lymphedema medical alert bracelet as a safety precaution in a medical emergency. Today lymphoedema can be detected with something known as bio-impedance. Using this technique, you measure the rate electricity travels through an affected limb. Electricity flows more quickly when there is fluid accumulation in the limb. Bioimpedance analysis assists medical practitioners to ascertain the development of lymphedema in patients following cancer surgery. Measurements are an important aspect relating to the diagnosis of lymphedema, and this technology brings hope of obtaining these essential measurements. It is a non-invasive method.
A patient with a limb at risk will be advised on special exercises, diets and changes to skin care. Once lymphedema has manifested itself, the sooner treatment starts the better. If it is found that the signs and symptoms of swelling are caused by an infection, antibiotics may be prescribed. To avoid infections, protect your skin from scratches, and wear gloves when doing gardening or house work.
Your Health Condition can be Immediately Recognized
If something should happen to you and you are unable to speak, it is absolutely critical that medical emergency professionals are able to determine what a person’s individual medical status is. Without proper identification obtained from a lymphedema medical ID bracelet which provides information on your lymphedema, inappropriate treatment can jeopardize your health. Wearing a lymphedema medical alert bracelet can provide medical professionals with the information they need, and your bracelet will certainly speed up the assessments made by the people who got to you first.
Many people’s lives have been saved because their medical bracelet provided the information needed to start with treatment when the patient was unable to speak. Medical errors can be avoided by simply wearing an alert bracelet, and guided by the information, the emergency teams can commence with treatment better informed.
Anyone who has a rare or chronic medical condition such as lymphedema, asthma or diabetes, or who is allergic to certain drugs or food, as well as other serious conditions, needs to wear a medical alert bracelet.
Infection an Ever Present Threat
The greatest danger with lymphedema is infection, and this is because lymphedema leads to the immune system being weakened, opening the person up to infection. The immune system has to function optimally, and when we do not provide the body with the right food and supplements to combat the onslaught of infection, its resistance will start to fail, and its ability to fight disease diminishes. The lymph system is not able to carry away impurities. Preventing infection is essential because left untreated, infections can be life threatening, and each successive infection can further compromise the lymphatic and immune systems.
It is not wise to leave lymphedema because not treating it can actually lead to other complications. Some of the conditions you can begin to see emerging are:
- damage to skin
- hardening of tissue
- other secondary problems like depression can set in, particularly when a patient sees the swelling and isn’t sure what is causing it
Who Gets Lymphedema?
Millions of people can be afflicted with it. Some people are born with what is known as primary lymphedema disease and the symptoms may only appear later on in life. It can be a relief to know that a lymphedema medical alert bracelet can also be ordered for a tiny little baby to wear. The bracelets can be tailor-made to suit anyone. When you are born with the disease it is called primary lymphedema, while secondary lymphedema can be the consequence of cancer treatments. It is important for those who have had cancer treatment to be aware of the possibility of lymphedema. Whatever the cause, prompt diagnosis and treatment should follow to stop it from progressing.
Lymphedema can be prevented and even managed by:
- maintaining good nutrition so as to avoid infections. Reduce foods high in salt.
- exercising regularly – check with your doctor first before starting . Swimming and walking are superb sports
- drink plenty of water
Lymphedema is one of those ailments that cannot be cured, but with the right kind of treatment, the affected arm or leg can have it size reduced and managed. A lymphedema medical alert bracelet certainly need not be an unattractive piece of jewelery that clashes with your own accessories. These medical bracelets will suit any occasion, and there is always a generous selection to choose from.
You can select a bracelet or a necklace with an engraved pendent. You can also choose what you want engraved on your medallion. Some people are very innovative, and they have designed special jewelery, mostly beaded, that can be clipped on to your existing Alert Bracelet to give it a completely different look. The people who come up with these ideas want you still to look fashionable while you are looking out for your health.
Online Information and Ordering Convenience
You just have to look on the Internet because there is plenty of Lymphedema medical alert bracelet information, and some of the suppliers of these bracelets will also offer free engraving. These medical alert bracelets are for adults and for children, and the beauty of them is they speak for you when you cannot speak. For ease and convenience, you can order medical alert jewelery over the Internet when you have a credit card. They have established policies to make absolutely sure that your information is totally safe and secure.
The Internet offers a good selection of lymphedema medical alert bracelet information and products. Go onto any one of the sites and you will see a broad range of engraved men’s and women’s bracelets that can be personalized to suit your style. You can choose any materials as well, and trendy colored interchangeable sport straps in plastic and rubber are actually sought after by teens. Leather, stainless steel, gold and silver and other options will all go towards making something you are comfortable with. The jewelery can also feature the red Caduceus symbol.
Pumps to Move Excess Fluid
With lymphedema, the idea is to get rid of the excess fluid of the affected limb and reroute it back into the circulatory system. Sometimes a pump is used, but this has to be done under the supervision of a professional lymphedema therapist. Sometimes when people are unable to get to a clinic, a therapist can teach the patient how to use the pump so that they can use it at home.
Manual lymph drainage on the other hand, is a light massage therapy technique. The skin is massaged in a particular direction, assisting the lymph fluid to drain properly. Sometimes people resort to surgery, and after surgery you will need to have physical therapy to reduce lymphedema.
Be Prepared for Any Emergency
In case of an emergency, a lymphedema medical alert bracelet can speak for you. Don’t be one of those people you read about who had the wrong medical treatment administered to them and who never lived to tell the tale. Get yours and feel safe and prepared.