Lymphedema

Lymphedema

Lymphedema (see the image below) is an abnormal collection of protein-rich fluid in the interstitium resulting from obstruction of lymphatic drainage. Lymphedema could be primary or secondary. 

Primary: Lymphedema arising from a developmental abnormality of the lymphatic system is classified as primary lymphedema. 

These types are as follows: 

1.Congenital lymphedema (Milroy disease), 
2. Lymphedema praecox (Meige disease), and 
3. Lymphedema tarda.

Secondary: Lymphedema is caused by an acquired defect in the lymphatic system and is commonly associated with Filariasis, obesity, infection, neoplasm, trauma.

Signs and symptoms of lymphedema include the following:

Chronic swelling of an extremity preceded lymphedema
Primarily lower extremity involvement (80%) but can also involve the upper extremities, face, genitalia,    and trunk
Fevers, chills, and generalized weakness
Fatigue related to the size and weight of the extremity
Embarrassment in public
Severe impairment of daily activities
Recurrent bacterial or fungal infections
Recurrent episodes of cellulitis, lymphangitis, fissuring, ulcerations, and/or verrucous changes