Gender, Appointments Attended and Severity of Lymphoedema Have a Significant Effect in Reducing Limb Volume: a Retrospective Study.
(2016) Gender, Appointments Attended and Severity of Lymphoedema Have a Significant Effect in Reducing Limb Volume: a Retrospective Study., no. 39.
Question: Lymphoedema is a chronic condition, caused by an impaired or damaged lymphatic system, leading to a build up of fluid that is high in protein which cannot be reabsorbed. This can have negative effects on quality of life. The Aims of this study are to: 1. Assess the success of the Lothian Primary Care Lymphoedema Service (LPCLS) in reducing limb volume. 2. Determine whether difference in limb volume after treatment is affected by variables including severity of lymphoedema, gender and number of appointments. Design: Retrospective observational study of 315 patients who had one or more episodes of cellulitis were identified. A linear regression model was used for statistical analysis of (n=43) (14%) participants who had completed data. Participants: 29 women and 14 men with lymphoedema were included. Intervention: Patients received complex decongestive therapy along with other optional modalities. Outcome measures: Reduction in limb volume (mL). Results: Using a linear regression model we found gender, number of appointments and severity of lymphoedema could be clinically significant and related to a reduction in limb volume as our study's mean was 276.16mL. Conclusion: The LPCLS is clinically effective in reducing limb volume. Number of appointments, gender and severity of lymphoedema could possibly contribute significantly to a reduction in limb volume after treatment. Future retrospective studies should consider the male population further to increase the evidence base.