Identifying your risk for developing lymphedema is important for early detection and prevention.
In the United States, the highest incidence of lymphedema occurs following breast cancer surgery, particularly among those who undergo post-surgery radiation therapy.
At the Lymphedema Education, Screening, Early Detection, and Prevention (LESEP) program, our specialists:
If your treatment plan for breast cancer includes surgery and/or radiation, your oncologist may refer you to the LESEP program to identify your risk for developing lymphedema.
Prior to your breast cancer surgery, specialists will use a non-invasive device to send low-frequency electrical currents through your arms and legs. Because these currents flow faster through fluid than muscle or bone, the procedure provides a baseline of the amount of fluid you’re retaining before your surgery.
Specialists will perform the same procedure 90 days after your surgery, and every three months following that.
If your baseline number has increased, you may be at risk for developing lymphedema, even though you may not be experiencing physician symptoms. Early detection of lymphedema is critical to delaying the onset of the disease, as you can begin treatment therapy sooner.
The LESEP program also sponsors workshops featuring experts in the detection and management of lymphedema. For upcoming workshop dates and times, or for lymphedema consultation, call 412-641-4274.
Your health information, right at your fingertips. Select MyUPMC to access your UPMC health information. For patients of UPMC-affiliated doctors in Central Pa, select UPMC Central Pa Portal. Patients of UPMC Cole should select the UPMC Cole Connect Patient Portal.