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Lymphatic System & Dysfunction
What can be done about poor lymphatic function?
1. Decongestive therapy is THE standard of care for lipedema, including manual lymphatic drainage (MLD), wrapping, compression, movement, dietary recommendations, and skin care. Decongestive therapy improves skin elasticity, restores the venoarteriolar reflex, increases lymphatic drainage and transport within vessels, and reduces capillary fragility.
2. Intermittent pneumatic compression may not improve limb size over MLD alone but may be effective alone when MLD is not available.
3. Compression is most effective when tissue edema is present; in its absence, it has little effect.
4. Exercise, especially aqua lymphatic therapy (pool hydrotherapy), significantly reduces limb volume in lymphedema.
5. Whole-body vibration improves strength and bone mineral density, increases peripheral circulation and lymph flow, and raises the threshold for edema formation.
6. Selenium has proven effective for reduction of secondary lymphedema. The maximum safe dietary intake for selenium is 600 micrograms daily.
7. Diosmin and hesperidin (flavonoids) can increase the strength of veins and capillaries. In addition, hesperidin can reduce histamine release from mast cells by strengthening the cell membrane. Dosage is 500-600 mg once or twice daily. Diosmiplex (Vasculera) is a combination of diosmin (600 mg) and alka4-complex (30 mg).
8. Rutin (flavanoid) can strengthen blood vessels and is used for varicose veins, internal bleeding, hemorrhoids, and to prevent strokes due to broken veins or arteries (hemorrhagic strokes).
9. Quercetin (flavanoid) has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Dosage is 500-1000 mg once or twice daily.
10. Guaifenesin works to reduce adhesiveness and surface tension of proteins and makes them easier to be transported within and excreted from the lymph system (also acetylcysteine). Dosage is 600 mg twice daily.
11. Acetylcysteine (N-acetylcysteine) also reduces adhesiveness and surface tension of proteins. Dosage is 500-600 mg once or twice daily.
12. Butcher’s broom is thought to cause vasoconstriction; it might improve circulation by preventing blood from “pooling” in veins.
13. Amphetamines (dextroamphetamine and phentermine) are potent CNS stimulants.
14. L-arginine is converted in the body into a chemical called nitric oxide, which causes blood vessels to open wider for improved blood flow. It also stimulates release of insulin and other hormones. Dosage is 3 grams three times daily.
Diagnosing Poor Lympatics
Indocyanine Green (ICG) Lymphography
More About Lymphatics
7 Best Herbs for Supporting Lymph Drainage – Microbe Formulas
A Closer Look at Lipedema and the Effects on the Lymphatic System – Joachim Zuther
Can Epsom Salts Help Keep Your Lymphatics Healthy? – Talk Lipoedema
How Lymphatic Insufficiencies Result in Edema or Lymphedema – Joachim Zuther
What does the lymphatic system do? – Medical News Today
What is indocyanine green (ICG) lymphography? – Physmedi
What is a Lymphangiogram? – Healthline
What is Lymphoscintigraphy? – Drugs.com
Skin Conditions & Care
More About Cellulitis
More About Erysipelas
Everything you need to know about erysipelas – Medical News Today
More About Fungal Infections
9 Foods to Avoid if You Have Candida – Amy Myers MD
More About Intertrigo
Intertrigo – Cleveland Clinic
More About Keratosis Pilaris
Piezogenic Pedal Papules
Burkhart, C., & Nguyen, N. (n.d.). Piezogenic pedal papules. Dermatology Advisor.
Chen, P. (2013). Piezogenic papules. DermNet New Zealand Trust. https://dermnetnz.org/topics/piezogenic-papules
Ma, D., & Vano-Galvan, S. (2013). Piezogenic pedal papules. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 185(18), E847. https://doi.org/10.1503/cmaj.121963
More About Piezogenic Pedal Papules
Pompholyx (Dyshidrotic) Eczema
More About Pompholyx Eczema
Pompholyx (Dyshidrotic) Eczema – National Eczema Society
More About Stasis Dermatitis
Whole-body vibration is a wonderful way to move lymph and is becoming a more frequent staple of treatment in the lipedema community. However, symptoms of vibratory urticaria have been reported by several patients in our community after vibration. A rare condition, vibratory urticaria is characterized by itching, reddish skin and swelling within minutes of local exposure to vibration. Areas of skin that are most exposed to the stimulus, often the hands, are generally more severely affected. People with this condition may also experience flushing, headaches, fatigue, blurry vision or a metallic taste in the mouth during episodes of skin involvement. Common triggers include mowing the lawn, riding a motorcycle, horseback riding, or mountain biking.
Treatment involves avoiding the stimulus and use of antihistamines.
Genetics and Rare Diseases Information Center. (2016, July 20). National Institutes of Health. https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/diseases/9806/vibratory-urticaria
More About Vibratory Urticaria
Vibratory Urticaria – National Institutes of Health
Post-Operative Skin Care
Know your dressings: Calcium alginates, CMC, and gelling fibers. (2017, October 31). DermaRite Clinical Insights. https://dermarite.com/know-your-dressings-calcium-alginates-cmc-and-gelling-fibers
What is an alginate dressing? (2017, September 29). Wound Source. https://www.woundsource.com/blog/what-alginate-dressing
More About Skin Care
The Basics of Healthy Skin Care – Very Well Health
Skin and Nail Care in Lymphedema Management, Tattoos – Joachim Zuther, Lymphedema Guru