Compression machine for legs??: Does anyone use a... - LSN

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Compression machine for legs??


Does anyone use a compression sleeve on their legs? If so, does it work? How many times of day do you use it? Does it alleviate you from wearing compression socks? I started with one lower leg however, I was bitten by mosquitoes (through my support socks) and my legs have started to swell higher and the other leg is swelling as well now. I had a sinus surgery and decided I would help my leg while I was home and elevate them every night. Well it appears that fluid has drained to the thigh where is sits. Not one of my thighs puff up. Has this happened to anyone? Any advice? Also, does any take prednisone? If so, does it help with Lymphedema and the swelling?

7 Replies

Have you put your question to any of the US support groups? There are more devices available there, so you should be able to touch base with users,

Prednisone should not be used for lymphoedema - it can cause further swelling. If, however, you have been prescribed it for another condition, then you must take it, but only for the course time stated on the packaging.

Thank you

Hello Lynora,

No I haven’t. I have been using this site as my understanding is the UK is more advanced in Lymphedema. Getting advice from this site enables me to know what options could be out here. In my experience, the US has limited resources. So, if I know what I’m possibly looking for I can cut all of the merry go round and the red tape.

I do have a compression pump and I should use it every night but that unfortunately doesn't happen. There are 2 leg sleeves with 4 air chambers plus pants with the 4 chambers.

These things work to move the fluid in your legs however you must still wear your compression stockings. I wear class 3 flat knit stockings and this should be the minimum grade of support you would need.

You should be able to hire the pump and sleeves and that's usually a good way to start. You may be able to find a lymphedema physiotherapist who hired the pump and would be able to show you how to correctly operate it.

What I do know is you have to try and move the fluid either mechanical,(pump) or manually via massage otherwise you will develop fibrotic areas in your legs which will be very hard to shift.

Hopefully this helps

I forgot to mention - re Prednisone. I was on Prednisone recently with a chemotherapy drug and my good leg became swollen below the knee. I remember reading somewhere on this forum that someone had suggested ironically that low dose Prednisone had a positive effect on limb reduction. I was on the lowest dose of Prednisone (5mg ?) and there was no reduction in my legs.

Look into Tactile Medical’s Flexitouch system and the LymphaPress system.

They are the US market leaders with extensive independent clinical trials looking at their safety and effectiveness. Not all pumps are created equal. You most definitely want a pump that does not stop at the top of your legs given lymph accumulation you described. You need drainage up into your trunk. The cheap pumps don’t include trunk drainage nor do they have as many air chambers which results in less effective overall drainage

Personally I think you have to catch lymphoedema in its very early stages to make anything work long term to contain it right from the very beginning . I've had it for twenty five years when less was known about it and treatment was very inconsistent and it’s certainly got worse over that time but I’m trying to manage it the best I can with arthritis which doesn’t help . Basically I use anything that I can to make a difference .

I’ve used leg pumps during hospice treatment visits and I’ve also used experimented with them at home over a more lengthy period of time using them twice a day . I would say that they certainly do help but only alongside others things . The treatment for lymphoedema is very holistic and everyone’s very different , so you have to work out what’s best for you , you can’t just use the pump and forget about everything else .

Over the twenty five years I’ve had it , I’ve tried lots of different treatments and machines . For me personally I’ve always found that hands on manual lymph drainage on a regular basis makes the most difference to keeping my limbs softer .

You need regular use of the correct compression garments , good skin care , daily simple lymph drainage from yourself , regular excercise but nothing going over the top with it and just as much rest. I’ve always found it beneficial to raise my legs at every opportunity when I’m resting but I continue to circle my feet etc to keep my legs moving and not just keep them static .

I’ve found that lymphoedema treatment very similar to the cupping technique which lifts your skin has helped to break down any fibrosis that I had but this was given from a Lymphoedema specialist and it helped to kick start further treatment . Multi layer bandaging has made a difference but I find that my swelling rebounds over time so this is very repetitious and it makes me feel very run down when the lymph is moved around my body . I’m now having treatment using a hivamat machine from my private Lymohoedema specialist and I find this very good at keeping my leg in good condition but as I’ve said it’s a multi type approach that really works .

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