Lymphoedema appointment

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Wednesday 11th June

I have been coming to see my lymphoedema nurse for about six months now on a weekly basis, for lymphatic drainage massage on my left leg. It’s like gentle body brushing of the fluid, encouraging it up my leg, past the long scar at the top of my thigh, and then towards the nodes in my armpit.

Following surgery last November, I no longer have inguinal nodes in my left groin, so any lymph fluid in my leg has to be given a new pathway in order to disperse it. Wearing a surgical stocking every day has helped with the swelling too, and my foot and ankle are no longer as swollen as they were.

However from the inside of my knee to the top of my leg, there is still a certain amount of puffiness! In fact today the nurse measures my leg, taking a circumference every five centimetres. Her calculation shows that my left leg is carrying 1200 ml of extra fluid compared to the right limb.

That is a huge amount! A big bottle of lemonade! One point two litres!

I try to exercise by walking every day, I drink lots of water, eat lots of fruit and vegetables, and have cut down on sugar, dairy and carbs. It really is quite disappointing.

For the remainder of the session I have my leg encased in the inflatable boot that delivers pneumatic, pulsing massage in a gentle, relaxing manner.

Keep on moving, keep on hoping, keep on believing.

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