ADDITION OF LOCAL CRYOTHERAPY FOR TREATMENT OF POST-MASTECTOMY LYMPHEDEMA
- Z.M. Askary (South Valley University)
- M. Elshazly (South Valley University)
Worldwide, lymphedema can present as a significant health issue. Left untreated, it can have long-term medical and psychological consequences for patients. Cryotherapy is a new physical therapy modality used for many purposes including reduction of pain, inflammation, and edema. It is thought to decrease interstitial fluid volume through many mechanisms. Therefore, it is reasonable to think that cryotherapy might have a positive effect in treatment of lymphedema. The goal of this study was to investigate how local cryotherapy in combination with standard therapy affects patient outcomes. Forty post-mastectomy female patients aged 40-60 years old with lymphedema were referred to the outpatient clinics of the Faculty of Physical Therapy at South Valley University for medical treatment and follow-up by the vascular surgery department. Patients were randomly divided into two groups of equal size. Traditional physical therapy programs (manual lymphatic drainage, pneumatic compression, bandaging, breathing exercises, circulatory exercises, shoulder mobilizations, and ROM exercises) were combined with pulsed local cryotherapy three times per week for 12 weeks in Group (A). For 12 weeks, Group (B) received only traditional physical therapy three times per week. Patients were evaluated using circumferential measurement with tape at the wrist, below the elbow, and above the elbow level, as well as ultrasonography to assess skin thickness before the start of physical therapy, 6 weeks later, and at the end of the treatment (after 12 weeks). Results indicate that cryotherapy is an effective adjunct modality for the treatment of secondary lymphedema and should be added to physical therapy protocols for lymphedema rehabilitation.
Keywords: Cryotherapy, lymphedema, post-mastectomy, treatment
How to Cite:
Askary, Z. & Elshazly, M., (2022) “ADDITION OF LOCAL CRYOTHERAPY FOR TREATMENT OF POST-MASTECTOMY LYMPHEDEMA”, Lymphology 55(2), 70-76. doi: https://doi.org/10.2458/lymph.5269