Product idea to help lymphoedema sufferers

Hi all!

Just joined this forum as a fellow lymphoedema sufferer. I have it only in my feet, which makes walking in heels tough as a 20 year old!

But anyway, I'm at uni doing Product Design and for my final year project I would like to make a portable device which a user can sit on which elevates the users leg or both legs up to their required height (will be adjustable) and then sit or lie down with their leg elevated comfortably to ease the swelling.

( I've noticed that recliners or poofs aren't actually tall enough to help the swelling go down, and I end up piling loads of cushions up to get my leg high enough lol)

I want the product to be really comfortable, adjustable so that the majority of people can use it, compact and most of all help people with leg problems.

This is just an initial idea and I would like to welcome any criticism or ideas towards this?

Thanks 😀

11 Replies

  • I like the idea of a portable, and adjustable, (sort of) stool for elevating legs. I don't quite get your bit "which the user can sit on", I can't envisage what you are thinking of in relation to that - but a portable adjustable something to elevate my legs sounds a great idea.

  • Sounds like an interesting idea. I live in America. My mum was born in London and I have a lot of family over there. I was interested in seeing if the treatment for lymphedema was as difficult there as it is here. My first thought is, will this be something under the category of a medical supply product ,lots of rules there. You must give thought to a patent if you're planning on the item to help others as well. I think you need to start with simple first. anything that will move the legs up and down itself involves mechanical issues. I would concentrate on something that expands like a "plastic blowup " item. One that can be packed into something small for transportation. Then be able to take it out and have it expand as needed. Keep in touch. I'd love to see how it turns out. By the way I have bilateral lower lymphedema of both legs that took 5 years to get diagnosed. I am a long time hospital administrator who can no longer work. I am educating my primary. doctor. I found a wonderful dr and therapist had the treatment and am somewhat under control. Something new always pops up. I know I got the lymphedema from chemo for breast cancer in 2002. The oncologist says no but I know when my issues started.. I'm no longer able to work so I'

    d love to help.

  • This sounds like a great idea, it would also help someone like my Dad who has swollen legs and occasional phlebitis so is advised to sit with legs raised as often as possible. Good luck

  • Sounds like a great idea to me and should help others who need to elevate their legs not only lymphedema patients. I also agree keep it simple because of patenting etc. Good luck to you and I shall be very interested to see how you progress. I have LE inn both legs from my toes to my waist.....for the last 20 years!!!

  • Hello Patsy, I also have lymphoedema in both legs and up to my waist. Had it for about eight months now since surgery for cancer. I have nerve damage in my left leg. Any tips you can give me would be gratefully received! I am only halfway through an assessment with the nurse lead team but I am aiming to be referred to a specialist hospital Unit. This site is so helpful because without it I would feel extremely isolated! Thank you

  • I have had the dreaded LE for 21 years now !! However we all have good days and bad days so no one is alone in those feelings. I play a lot of tennis and have a dog which of course means walking all good to keep the lymp moving, Swimming is also very beneficial and you don't actually have to swim you can just walk against the water. Where is your lymphoedema the worst or most uncomfortable?At the beginning I wore girdle like pants from M&S with jelly at the bottom of the leg as I was wearing stockings plus all sorts of makeshift pads to place inside pants for the abdominal lymphoedema. I now wear tights which works better for me. I lost all feeling in my right thigh almost down to the knee for about 4 years but then it came back slowly, have no idea if mine was nerve damage... to be honest I didn't ask too many questions I was so angry at the outcome of a radical hysterectomy for cervical cancer and the lack of help or info out there. It took me quite a while to find help and even now it's sporadic and the more you help yourself the less NHS help you get. I am fortunate in having a private MLD therapist who lives 10 mins away so I can save up treat my self to a few days of MLD. I presume you have the end of your bed raised it does help. If you want to talk I can give you my phone no. There is a life after this diagnosis albeit somewhat different. Best of luck shall be thinking of you.x

  • Sorry Tav1 this was a reply to you!!!

  • Hello I would be really grateful for the opportunity to talk with you on the phone if you are still willing?! I have just had my first completed assessment with the Nurse led team. At first because of the spinal problems that cause the nerve pain in my leg they were not going to offer anything but after seeing a senior nurse and they have decided to try me with tights. After explaining that ultimately I want the operation they have suggested that I talk to my GP who may be able to help with funding Applications .. Thank you for your support, it means a lot xx Amanda

  • Thank you everybody who's read this post and to everybody who's left their comments, I really appreciate it! 😀

    I just want to let you all know that everyone's story matters to me and is helping me through this project, and all the info has been a great help in understanding what people need. This project is really target market focused, and so I really want to get to know what views you all have on lymphoedema and other leg related issues and how I could help in any way possible.

    I'll definitely keep you all posted, and over the next 12 weeks I'll be working on sketches and ways of developing my idea, so any feedback to those will be great!

    Once a prototype has been made, I'd like to do some testing at the hospital where I have my check ups, and hopefully it'll be a success! I've got a long way to go til then though!

    Thanks again everyone!

    Larysa x

  • Muscle activity is very important in helping Lymph move along to the exit. So I suggest you add an activity, say something you push with your foot, to improve the muscle action!!

  • I love this idea about adding an activity. Think that could be really fun idea to develop! Thanks Xylyne

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