Treatment of Lymphedema: Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT)
Complete Decongestive therapy is also called Combined, Complex or Comprehensive Decongestive Therapy. CDT is the main treatment for lymphedema. Experts who treat lymph- edema consider CDT the “gold standard” of treatment. CDT has been shown to be safe and effective.
Effects of CDT are to:
1. decrease swelling 2. increase lymph drainage from the congested areas 3. reduce skin fibrosis and improve the skin condition1 4. enhance patient’s functional status 5. relieve discomfort and improve quality of life 6. reduce the risk of cellulitis and a rare form of angiosarcoma.
Components of CDT
1. manual lymph drainage (MLD) 2. multi-layer, short-stretch compression bandaging 3. lymphatic exercise 4. skin care 5. education in lymphedema self-management, and elastic compression garments
Therapists providing CDT should have completed at least 135 hours of training as recommended by the Lymphology Association of North America®. After completion of 1 year of clinical experience, therapists may become further credentialed, or LANA certified, after taking a national exam. These therapists with the full certification are designated by a CLT-LANA credential.
Our Lymphedema Management Program is highly dedicated to:
- Lymphedema Risk Reduction
- Treatment of the Lymphatic System in Early Stages of Recovery
- Lymphedema Management of Existing Conditions
- Lymphedema Education
We offer up to date information, thereby negating myths and offering empowerment to all patients faced with managing their recovery. Our program is targeted to start at the sub-clinical level of lymphedema management, which provides opportunity for the lymphatic system and/or the lymphedema condition and its symptoms to be significantly reduced if treatment is administered at this early stage of onset.
Our expertise enables us to treat all lymphedema conditions, as well as associated edema conditions across the spectrum of diagnoses, including significantly involved lymphedema and/or associated edema cases and vascular disorders.
What Are the Rehabilitative Goals for Patients with Lymphedema?
- Patient Education, covering the most important aspects of lymphedema management
- SUCCINCT INFORMATION that keeps things simple and effective, and promotes personal freedom while living with the condition
- Fluid volume reduction in affected areas
- STABILIZATION of symptoms and MINIMAL FLUCTUATIONS and EXACERBATIONS of fluid volume in affected areas
Information about the MOST IMPORTANT ITEMS to have on hand for management/and risk reduction under all circumstances and at all times.