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All TopicsForum: Lymphedema → Topic: sprained arm

Topic: sprained arm

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

Posted on: Aug 10, 2017 05:32PM

BlueKoala wrote:

Sooo... possibly I am an idiot and am going to end up with lymphedema as a result.

About a week and a half ago I tripped over in the garden, sprained my foot quite badly, and grazed elbow on my ALND side. A couple of days later I remembered that I'm supposed to be careful with cuts and scrapes on that arm. So I promptly covered the scab again with betadene and a bandaid, and kept it covered until it was completely healed.

BUT, I think I also sprained my forearm in my fall. I don't know, I might have hurt it some other way. It didn't actually occur to me until this morning that an injury like that could trigger lymphedema - I was only really told about cuts and scratches - because it is still sore and a bit swollen (but so is my foot). I've wrapped it up tightly in a bandage, and I will do my lymphatic massage today and tonight (and every day for a few days), but is there anything else I can/should do?

35 at diagnosis. Complete response to chemo! Dx 3/15/2016, ILC, Right, 6cm+, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/28/2016 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 9/8/2016 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 10/24/2016 Whole-breast Surgery 6/21/2017 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone), Zoladex (goserelin)
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Aug 10, 2017 07:17PM Binney4 wrote:

Hi, Blue, really sorry about your fall--bummer! Life just keeps happening, and it seems to have no respect for our at-risk arms!

As for what else you can do, you'll want to stay really well hydrated, as that helps lymph flow. And elevate your arm whenever possible (on the back of the couch while reading or watching TV, on pillows at night, etc.). If you use a cold pack for your arm be sure to use a layer of cloth between you and the cold so the temperature is not too extreme. As for a tight bandage, where a risk of lymphedema is concerned that might be a bad idea, as it can limit or even block lymph flow. (The kind of wrapping that we do as therapy for lymphedema uses layers of specially-ordered short-stretch bandages--not the readily available ACE-type bandage. And we wrap in a special way that controls the tension to move the fluid in the direction we need it to go.)

Hoping you'll never have to join our Sorority of Swell! Please do keep us posted.

Gentle hugs,
Binney

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Aug 10, 2017 08:05PM BlueKoala wrote:

Thanks.

I've just called and made an appointment with the lymphedema specialist so she can have a look at it. Hopefully it will be cleared up by then!

35 at diagnosis. Complete response to chemo! Dx 3/15/2016, ILC, Right, 6cm+, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/28/2016 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 9/8/2016 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 10/24/2016 Whole-breast Surgery 6/21/2017 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone), Zoladex (goserelin)
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Aug 11, 2017 12:03AM ChiSandy wrote:

A sprain is probably not be something that disturbs the flow of lymph unless the system is already compromised. You will probably get edema (Nature's splint), but that's not the same thing as lymphedema.

As to the scrape, you did exactly the right thing to prevent infection and possible cellulitis.

Provided you didn't make the bandage airtight—that can be like a Petri dish for anaerobes. I stupidly did that after falling on my elbow in a parking lot and scraping it the night before flying to Europe, and despite initially dressing it with bacitracin (which I didn't pack because surely you can get anything OTC there that you can here—and some stuff that's Rx-only here), I got a nasty infection in London because all I could get at the drugstore was antiseptic and waterproof “Elastoplast" bandages. Same situation in Lausanne, next stop. Finally, in Paris, the pharmacist, who was my last resort before either dropping 150 euros on a house-call to my hotel or killing an entire day at the ER, sold me some aureomycin ointment and showed me how to dress it so that air could get to it for proper healing. Thank goodness it healed uneventfully and swiftly after that.

Diagnosed at 64 on routine annual mammo, no lump. OncotypeDX 16. I cried because I had no shoes...but then again, I won’t get blisters.... Dx 9/9/2015, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 9/23/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 11/2/2015 3DCRT: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/31/2015 Femara (letrozole)
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Aug 11, 2017 11:24AM hugz4u wrote:

Blue. So smart to call therapist. Let us know what happens. Yup no ace bandages for this

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Aug 13, 2017 09:09PM BlueKoala wrote:

The pain and swelling seems to have gone. I guess I will just keep an eye on things.

35 at diagnosis. Complete response to chemo! Dx 3/15/2016, ILC, Right, 6cm+, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/28/2016 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 9/8/2016 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 10/24/2016 Whole-breast Surgery 6/21/2017 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone), Zoladex (goserelin)
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Aug 14, 2017 10:56AM Binney4 wrote:

Ah, good! Now stay well, y'hear?! Thanks for letting us know,
Binney

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