, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 141-147
Date: 12 Jan 2010

Retrospective trial of complete decongestive physical therapy for lower extremity secondary lymphedema in melanoma patients

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Abstract

Background

Melanoma is a malignant tumour of melanocytes, which are found predominantly in skin, and at least 10–45% of patients develop secondary lymphedema (SL).

Purpose

This study seeks to investigate if individual’s lymphatic system can benefit from complete decongestive physical therapy (CDPT) 1 year after discharge from CDPT and consequently endorsing a better quality of life.

Methods

Male and female(n = 12) melanoma survivors 1–4 years post diagnosis with unilateral SL. Questionnaire and limb measurements were used to asses retrospective outcomes.

Results

A significant improvements (p < 0.05) has been in the categories of localisation, staging, disability and symptoms of SL.

Conclusions

CDPT provides relief in signs and symptoms for patients with SL following groyne dissection.