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How is lymphoedema treated?

If you think you have lymphoedema, the first step is to get it correctly diagnosed.

If you notice any swelling, tell your GP (family doctor) as soon as possible. They can refer you to a trained lymphoedema specialist for assessment and treatment. There are four main ways to treat and control lymphoedema:

  • Skin care
  • Compression with bandages or garments
  • Exercise that incorporates gentle contraction of muscles in the affected area or limb
  • Manual lymphatic drainage (MLD) or simple lymphatic drainage (SLD)

If you have severe swelling, your lymphoedema specialist may recommend more intensive treatment. This is called combined decongestive therapy (CDT).

Your Stories

Read other people’s stories of diagnosis and life with lymphoedema on our blog. If you would like to share your own story, please get in touch!