Abdominal LE

  • Question...

    I have a patient that is stage 4 Breast Cancer.  She is currently in chemo and radiation, and has had a double mastectomy with axillary lymph node disection in both armpits.  She currently has no edema in her arms, but her abdomen is full and hard.  I treated her for 4 weeks; we did hour-and-15 minute long MLD treatments, but pt refused to wear bike shorts or any compression on her abdomen, because it's uncomfortable.  Her treatment has been postponed currently, because her oncologist  is worried about her poor liver function as well, which she has because the cancer has mets to the bone and some organs.  The doctors have done four abdominal taps, and have removed 25+ lbs of fluid from her abdomen.  In addition, the patient is unable to eat or drink because she has a "belt-like" feeling at the top of her abdomen, and she throws up (which she did before she started chemo). 

    Now...other than the long and short abdominal MLD techniques, what can I do for her in the future, when she returns to therapy?!?!  Has anyone come across a situation like this before?

    Thanks for any input!

    Laura Voss, CMT, CLT

10 comments
  • Brandi French
    Brandi French Thanks for the info I will give that a try.
    July 8, 2009
  • Brandi French
    Brandi French Laura,

    I am at the point I need to get my patient into an abdominal copression garment. Have you used any abdominal compression garments? Ones that work good and or others that are not so hot! Let me know please! Thanks for all your input!
    Brandi
    July 8, 2009
  • Laura Voss
    Laura Voss Hey Brandi! Sorry it's taken me so long to respond.
    Usually I put my abdominal patients in a custom leg and 1/2 or capris/knee highs garments. Or, if their swelling is not too bad, I'll put them in under armour bike shorts and tank tops (esp the...  more
    July 15, 2009
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