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Topic: LVA surgery - bypass surgery - Have you done it?

Forum: Lymphedema — Risks, tips for prevention, and info about products that can address the symptoms of lymphedema.

Posted on: Feb 15, 2014 11:48AM

mjsgumbas wrote:

I recently traveled to the University of Iowa to meet with Dr. Wei Chen a supermirosurgeon/plastic surgeon.  I was referred to him by my PS.  I had the Indocyanine Green Lymphography done and was amazed at what was seen both in my healthy arm and diseased arm.  I was diagnosed under the Campisi Staging at Stage 2 as my LE is, right now, centralized in my upper arm.  Although most of my swelling is in my hand, the Stardust and Splash patterns are confined to the area of my tricept.

Dr. Chen believes I would be an excellent candidate for LVA, as my symptoms have only been around about 6 months.  He believes better results come with early intervention.  I wear compression sleeves (often) and a glove almost all of my waking moments.  I do massage also.  It hasn't progressed, but it isn't relieved with any of the treatments.

In our lengthy 2 days clinic with Dr. Chen he explained in detail how the surgery is performed, showed us actual video and covered his results since he began performing this procedure.  His statistics have been: no patients symptoms worsened, 90% saw some form of relief and 10% of the 90% were cured.  There will still be therapy and garments for some time post-op, but the intent is to ease the necessity of these daily.

An 8 hr surgery - although minimally invasive - seems overwhelming.  But if they don't try - they won't know!  The surgery only effects the skin and fat layer - never reaches muscle, so the recovery/pain is nominal.

These surgeries have been performed in Asian countries for decades!!!!!!!!  With favorable results! 

I've tried to seach thru these threads to find someone who has had the procedure done and what the results were.  So, please let me know if you had success!!!!


 

Dx 4/1/2013, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/24 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/24/2013 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Hormonal Therapy 5/28/2013 Surgery 11/6/2013 Reconstruction (right) Surgery 1/30/2014 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy 2/26/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Jan 21, 2019 02:06AM mjsgumbas wrote:

I am extatic to hear all the wonderful words you have for Dr Chen - you took the words out of my mouth!!!!! He is an amazing, caring and wonderful man!!! If it wasn’t for my PS in IL paying attention to Dr Chen in a conference years ago I would never have had the opportunity to go to him. My PS encouraged me to at least hear Dr Chen out and after meeting him I was convinced this was something I had to try - now almost 5 years ago! It truly changed my life!!!

I am open too to try to find a way to advocate for this cause...not sure how else to spread the word but am open to helping ANY way I can! No one knows what the outcome will be but obviously it has helped quite a few so far! I was happy to be one of the 1st few patients of Dr Chen and was willing to take the chance - more people need his help and shouldn’t be afraid to try!!

I wish you all continued progress and hope every day is better than the day before!! I really need to reach out to him again for a 5 year follow up so he can continue to document progress with LVA!

Thanks for keeping this thread going!!!!!Happy

Mary Jane

Dx 4/1/2013, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/24 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/24/2013 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Hormonal Therapy 5/28/2013 Surgery 11/6/2013 Reconstruction (right) Surgery 1/30/2014 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy 2/26/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Feb 2, 2019 09:20AM Pixie_16 wrote:

I'm a newbie here, but have been struggling with lymphedema since 10y. Had breast cancer at 26 y old, lymphedema started 1 y later.

Recently things have been getting gradually worse (reoccurring infections, more swelling, heavy feeling, stiff fingers,....)

I went to see a specialized surgeon here in my country (Belgium) for a bypass, but he was quite rude to me and I lost all hope of ever getting better for a while. But reading your stories gives me hope!!

A personal question: are any if you who have had the surgery on the arm, overweight? Or had the operation with the bypass refused because of weight?

My BMI is 30 (I know, my weight is a life long battle between 65 kg or 85 kg 🙄) and the surgeon dismissed me based on my current weight. He told me there's no way he could perform a successful operation on a person that's too fat.

Plus my difference was 'only' 230 ml. He said it was to little for the surgery, he had patients who were far worse off.

It still hurts though, even if it's 'only 230 ml'.


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Feb 3, 2019 01:31AM HappyTrisha wrote:

Absolutely ridiculous, Pixie. I'm at least 40 pounds overweight and there was never any mention of my weight!

I'M DOWN WITH CHEMO!

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