The pneumatic compression device is helpful in treating Lymphedema sufferers. Because of the swelling caused by this condition, there are a number of tasks…
Lymphedema is not a condition that is curable however a pneumatic compression device helps relieve the symptoms of Lymphedema. The condition occurs when the lymph system is damaged or blocked. The build up of fluid in soft body tissues usually causes swelling in the arms, legs but may also affect other parts of the body.
Pneumatic compression devices or compression pumps are used to remove the excess fluid from the limbs, thereby relieving pain and pressure and allowing the person a normal life. Often, because of the swelling caused by this condition, there are a number of tasks normally taken for granted that suddenly become too difficult for someone suffering from Lymphedema. They can be as simple as changing their clothes or taking a shower, going to the grocery store or even walking within their home. The swelling is often so severe that the affected limb will become several times larger than normal.
When a pneumatic compression device or Lymphedema pump is used, typically on the arms or legs, they help the buildup of fluid to be moved away from the area and back to the Lymphatic system. This is the natural way for the body to rid itself of this fluid; however, for those who suffer from Lymphedema, the lymph glands become blocked and the fluid cannot drain. In addition, there are many people who have circulatory problems that may benefit from the use of these pumps.
The cause of Lymphedema is not always known although sometimes it is due to surgery for certain types of cancer. A pneumatic compression device is often used by those who have had surgery or radiation treatment for breast cancer, prostate, uterine and bladder cancer. These are the most common forms of cancer for which treatment resulted in the development of Lymphedema. The pump has a sleeve that is attached and when it is placed on the swollen limb and inflated and deflated, this action helps the fluid to disperse and return to the Lymphatic system.
This treatment may be necessary several times a week and with this handy pump, they may be done within the comfort of your own home. Before the availability of a pneumatic compression device, people with this condition had to go to a specialist regularly for treatment.
The importance of ridding the body of this swelling cannot be stressed enough. Without the proper treatment there are a number of problems that can develop due to the buildup of fluid. The area may develop sores or ulcers that do not heal, resulting in gangrene. This will necessitate amputation of the limb. The swelling also prevents immune cells from being able to get to the part of the body that is swollen and this is where they are needed the most. Incorporated channels in the sleeve of the the pneumatic compression device are responsible for moving fluid away from the swollen area. When the pump is used, these channels are inflated and deflated effectively pushing the fluid away from the area.
The benefits are many including a quiet operation that is easily used while enjoying music or the television. Additionally, the cost is typically covered by insurance companies with a statement from a physician affirming that the device is medically necessary.