Patient questions relevant to lymphedema

  • Will the IHS, Tribal, or Urban Health Clinic pay for my lymphedema care?

  • How can I get a trained provider or therapist to fit me for a compression garment or bandages through the IHS, Tribal, or Urban Health Clinic? If not from these clinics, then what other programs will help me get a good fitting compression garment and bandages at no cost?

  • Will traditional Indian ceremonies (specific to each tribal community) help or hurt the lymphedema?

  • I am very overweight. Why does extra body weight make me more likely to get lymphedema? How can I control the lymphedema while I am trying to lose weight?

  • I am diabetic. How does diabetes affect the lymphedema? How does the lymphedema affect the diabetes?

  • I have high blood pressure. How does high blood pressure affect the lymphedema? How does the lymphedema affect the high blood pressure?

  • Does the lymphedema mean my cancer has spread? How can you be sure?

  • How long is the swelling likely to last for me?

  • What types of things may I have done to set it off?

  • What types of things can I do to reduce the likelihood of having it again?

  • How can I do ceremony safely (without risking lymphedema)?

  • What are some ways other Natives have explained this condition to their friends and family so that the patients haven't felt pressured to do something they should not do?

  • How can I exercise safely because of my arm / leg being so swollen?

  • How can I lose weight to help reduce my likelihood of lymphedema when I've never been able to keep off the weight before?

  • If the healthcare provider had to give me a shot or take blood from my arm(s) or leg(s) that had lymph nodes taken out or damaged, what can I do so that this doesn't happen again?

  • How can I get a "LYMPHEDEMA ALERT" bracelet or necklace?

  • Why can't the provider just drain the extra fluid out of my arm(s) or leg(s)?

  • How should I have blood pressure or blood draws done if both of my arms have had lymph nodes removed or damaged?

  • Why do I feel pain when I have lymphedema but other cancer patients don't have the pain?

  • Why do I get pain in my neck or back when I have lymphedema?

  • Why am I more likely to have infections just because I've had lymphedema?

  • What is cellulitis and why am I more likely to have a problem with it?

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