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Bandages for the Treatment of Lymphedema

An integral part of active lymphedema treatment is bandaging or wrapping. First lotion is applied to the limb to moisture and protect the skin. This is followed by tubular stockinette and/or gauze for added skin protection. Next comes a layer of foam, padding, and/or swell spots which serves several purposes. It helps to evenly distribute the compression from the outer-layer of bandaging . It protects bony protrusions and fills in concave areas. And finally it massages the tissue to prevent hardening or fibrosis. Finally, a layer of short-stretch bandages are applied to provide graduated compression to the limb. Bandaging is typically worn for 23 hours per day, until the limb is reduced enough in size to switch to a compression garment for maintenance. Your therapist may add or remove a layer depending on your specific condition. A bandage liner like Caresia from Solaris or JoVi Pak can often be used instead of stockinette, foam, and padding. Ask your therapist.

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