I have lymphedema in my left arm. The odds of me getting lymphedema were 50/50 (25% from surgery alone, raised to 50% due to radiation treatments in my underarm). Okay, it doesn’t help that I’m overweight either.From www.breastcancer.org:
Lymphedema is a side effect that can begin during or after breast cancer treatment. It isn’t life threatening, but it can last over a long period of time. This condition involves swelling of the soft tissues of the arm or hand. The swelling may be accompanied by numbness, discomfort, and sometimes infection.
By the time I could get to the doctor and get a prescription for a compression sleeve, I was in a lot of pain. The specialist assisting me took his time to get the sleeve on me. Thank goodness because I just about passed out from the pain a couple times. Yes, I’m serious.
Lymphedema is very likely going to be one of those things I will need to manage life-long. If there is any good news in all of this, I have less pain today than yesterday.
Right now I’m waiting for the referral to go through so that I go to physiotherapy as part of the management plan.
I have had a fair amount of “why me” in the past 24 hours and a few choice words for everyone who thinks I’m positive about things. I guess it only proves that even I have a breaking point.