The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your doctor or another health care provider if you have any questions about a medical condition or treatment, and do not disregard your doctor’s advice because of any information provided on this site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately contact your doctor or call 911.
Compression garments can help prevent lymphedema from getting worse. Speak to your healthcare provider to see what the best treatment is for you.
Compression garments should be comfortable and provide firm support. You should be able to move as you usually do, and the garments should not cause you to feel any tingling, pain, or numbness. If you do find that your garment is uncomfortable, speak to your healthcare provider who may have a recommendation for you.
Most compression garments will need to be replaced every 4–6 months, as they lose their effectiveness over time. As they wear out, they may provide uneven support which is not optimal.
Increased activity during the day calls for stronger compression. If night compression is necessary, bandaging can be used, or a nighttime-specific garment may be recommended by your healthcare provider.
It is important that you do so, as your compression garment will act against the muscles, making the exercises more effective in moving the lymphatic fluid. Additionally, the pressure from the garment will help keep the lymph from collecting in areas that are already swollen. Compression garments are not necessary if you are swimming and the affected limb is submerged in water, as the pressure of the water will provide compression on the limb.