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Topic: Traditional Wrapping vs Circaid Velcro Sleeve

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

Posted on: Oct 13, 2018 01:39PM

ck55 wrote:

Hello All,

This my first time posting on this thread. I have had varying degrees of lymphedema since 2007. I have been to an LE therapist and learned MSD. But the last few (or more) years I became very lackadaisical about the whole issue and naturally my arm increased in size. I just ignored it.

Well a few weeks ago I ended up at the ER on a Saturday night with a 103 degree fever and a painful raging red arm. Then 3 days in the hospital on IV antibiotics. Never had this happen before. Don’t ever want it to happen again!!!

Now I am seeing a new LE therapist and she is threatening to wrap my arm. But she also said there was an option of using a Velcro arm wrap that I guess would be easier for me to do myself.

My question is have any of you wonderful ladies had experience with these Velcro sleeve? Do they work? How horrible is traditional wrapping? My therapist said with the traditional wrapping I would have to go in every day during the week for her to re wrap me. I would have to do it myself on weekends. Is this typical?

Anyway, I would appreciate any opinions or experiences you could share with me. I feel like such a newbie with all this. This whole experience has by far been the worst thing I have had to deal with since starting this journey almost 12 years ago! Scared

Thanks in advance. Cyndi

DX 11/9/06 9cm ILC Stage 3A Mastectomy ER+ PR+ HR- 2/16 Nodes DD AC/Taxol Radiation
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Oct 13, 2018 11:52PM Binney4 wrote:

Cyndi, I'm so sorry about your recent experience with cellulitis. What a bummer of a "wake up call" to have to deal with. LE rots!!

The good news is that it sounds like you've landed with a really smart and on-the-ball LE therapist. Whew! The Velcro wrap alternatives have worked well for most folks, and they're definitely easier to learn to manage. Traditional wrapping is a steep learning curve, but for some of us it's more effective and a good skill to have in our LE toolbox. One thing to do for sure is to have your new therapist go over the Manual Lymph Drainage with you to assure that you're still doing it correctly, as you'll want to do that daily as well. Also, be sure she goes over some personalized cellulitis risk reduction strategies so you can move forward confidently. You're so right--cellulitis is NOT an experience anybody wants to repeat!

Do keep us posted, and tell us how we can help! Gentle hugs,

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Oct 14, 2018 06:25PM Denise-G wrote:

Hi ck55 - so sorry about your LE flaring up and catching up with you so to say.

Wanted to give you hope -- I started with wrapping (mostly on my own - my LE therapist trained me well) and then I sort of graduated to the Circaid Velcro sleeve. The wrapping worked better for me when I was in the major flare up stage. But with regular LE Therapist visits, being faithful about treatment and doing what the therapist told me to do, my arm and hand greatly improved. I still need to wear a compression sleeve for 12 hours per day and do LE Manual Lymph Drainage, but my hand went back to normal.

GOOD LUCK! It is hard to do what they tell you to do, but it really helps when you have a good therapist! Sounds like you do!

www.denise4health.wordpress.com my BC Blog with over 200 informative posts about all aspects of BC - stop by! Myself, my mom, and sister were all diagnosed with BC within 3 years. What a ride! Dx 10/10/2011, IDC, Left, 6cm+, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 9/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 11/23/2011 Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Chemotherapy 12/27/2011 AC + T (Taxol) Targeted Therapy 2/28/2012 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Hormonal Therapy 10/11/2012 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Oct 15, 2018 05:58PM ck55 wrote:

Binney and Denise, thank you so much for the info and the encouragement.

I go back to the LE therapist on Friday and I am going to tell her I want to try the Velcro sleeve. I am hoping that means I won’t have to go in every day as it will be easier to put it on myself.

Rights now I am doing MLD twice daily and wearing my old sleeve at least twelve hours a day. Seems like it might be helping. My lower arm appears to be smaller. 👍

I will let you know how this all turns out. So mad at myself that I ignored the problem for so long. In this case ignorance was definitely not bliss!

Thanks again. Cyndi 💜💙

DX 11/9/06 9cm ILC Stage 3A Mastectomy ER+ PR+ HR- 2/16 Nodes DD AC/Taxol Radiation

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