Lymphedema · Surgery

Lymphedema Update

This is a “before” photo. It’s really hard to see the difference between the two arms but if you look closely you can see the difference in definition, especially in the hands.
Elisabeth always makes the BEST care packages! And Mom always sends the prettiest flowers!! Thank you!! ❤️

Hello! Long time no see!!! As mentioned in some previous posts (2+ years ago now!), my intent was to wrap this blog up somehow, but work got the best of me, and now all of a sudden it’s more than two years later.

But it’s time for an update, since two days ago I had surgery to improve my lymphedema. To recap: they removed 3 lymph nodes during my mastectomy in June 2016, and a few months later I banged my hand – and that was enough to trigger lymphedema. Over the next months and years I experimented with different daily regimens and found that by wearing a sleeve + glove every day (except at night); and near-daily use of a vascular pump, I was able to manage things, even though it’s still a pain in the ass.

In the meantime, I continued to keep an eye on other options. In fact there is a “famous” lymphedema specialist in the Bay Area, Dr. Rockson, who I was planning to visit. It takes a full YEAR to get on his calendar, and my appointment was scheduled for February 18, 2020.

And then an amazing thing happened – after having NO lymphedema specialists in the San Diego area, we all of a sudden got TWO! I went to a lecture given by one of them, and made an appointment to see the other of them, who practices in the same clinic as Dr. FixIt. We’ll call him Dr. Champ (and here is a link to a local TV interview he did), and I really hit it off well with him. He was confident that I was a good candidate for the procedure. After giving it a lot of thought I decided to cancel the visit with Dr. Rockson and go for it.

I plan to make another separate post with all the full details of the procedure. As of now, I’m at home and still a bit dizzy from the anesthesia, and my vision is blurred from the Scopolamine patch (which I peeled off this morning), but otherwise feeling pretty good. I will work from home next week, until the drains are removed.

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