Compression Garment

A comprehensive overview of lymphedema covering subjects as symptoms, diagnostics, research, causes and pictures
Compression Garment

Lymphedema compression garment

     There are a few questions that everybody wants to ask when coming to lymphedema compression garments so here you have a few of the most common questions and answers on this subject

     1. Why do I have to wear lymphedema compression garments when I exercise?

     Wearing your compression garments while exercising is very important. When one has lymphedema the pressure of the edema stretches out the skin which in turn will no longer provide the required firm surface for the muscle to contract against. When you exercise the blood flow increases which in turn creates an increase in the lymph load. The compression garment acts as a second skin on which the muscle can contract this resulting in the pressure being applied to the lymph vessels thus making the fluid to move. If you are not using your garment the affected limb could swell more as there is nothing making the fluid to move.

     2. Do I have to wash my compression garment every time I change it?

     Yes, washing them each time you change them is a very good practice. This way the garments will last longer, because they are made of elastic materials and as you know elastic stretches after use. If you wash them often it will help them retain their elasticity. Also washing your garments helps remove bacteria, dead skin or perspiration that accumulates inside the garment after exercise or even after normal wear.

     3. Do I need to change my compression garments more than twice a day?

     No, usually changing them twice a day is enough. However, you do need to change them twice a day and not less. The reason you need to change it twice a day, is because they loose elasticity and stop providing the needed compression especially near the areas that bend, like the elbows or knees. These areas being stretched more than the rest will loose elasticity and can allow the edema fluid to gather and swell.

     4. If I get the treatment how long after that do I have to wear the compression garment?

     Unfortunately at this moment there is no cure for lymphedema, so you will have to wear the garment all your life.

     5. Do I have to wear the compression garment if I go swimming?

     No you don't. This is actually one of the very few times when you can be free of your garment. The reason is that the water acts as the garment for you when swimming. When your limbs are under water the pressure of the water is enough.

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