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Apr 22, 2019 09:19AM
Here's a link for manual lympnode drainage/massage.
There are certain points in your body where you first stimulate the lymph system using small circular massage - the abdomen, both sides of your shoulder near your neck (where it indents). Then I do small circular massage under my good armpit, then across my chest to my bad armpit. All that stimulates the lymph system. To clear out the fluid, I then I do sweeping motions across my chest in the opposite direction.
After that, I do small circular motions starting on my leg (on the bad side), below my hip, and work my way up my torso doing small circular motions up to my bad armpit again. Then I do sweeping motions in the opposite direction down my torso. I also do sweeping motions down my arm, holding my arm straight up and starting with my hand.
There's another exercise: arm straight up, then do a twisting motion with your hand as if you are screwing in a light bulb, but also opening and closing your hand.
I wear KT tape on my arm daily. When I take a break from the tape to help my skin recover from the adhesive, I wear a night compression sleeve and glove to sleep in. The material looks like an oven mitt - very funny looking. But it does a good job. I got it through my physical therapist and was paid for with insurance. It's expensive, but I hope it lasts several years.
The KT tape is really inexpensive. I bought a bunch of it from Amazon. I think the cost break down is about 50 cents a strip, and I can wear each strip easily for 4-5 days.
The physical therapist I saw during chemo and radiation specialized in breast cancer patients and lymphedema. She was so helpful. If you haven't seen a PT, I would ask the primary care physician or oncologist for a referral.
Dx: January 2017, IDC, Stage IIa, 1/23 nodes, <1cm Chemo 2/16/17 Cytoxan Taxotere x4 Radiation 6/8/2017, natural alternative to tamoxifen
1/2017, IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 1/23 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-