NHS Forth Valley Lymphoedema Service - COVID-19 Update

 If you have any concerns regarding your lymphoedema or lipoedema then please contact the Lymphoedema Service based at Strathcarron Hospice on 01324826222. Please leave a message with the receptionist and someone will call you back as quickly as possible or you can email on [email protected]

Cancellation of Clinic Appointments until further notice

All face to face appointments and home visits at the Lymphoedema Service are now cancelled until the government lifts the restrictions currently in place. However, phone consultations are available and we are now able to carry out video consultations. We have a leaflet which has tells you how this works and what to do if you have any problems.

Lymphoedema Video Calling Information

The link for Lymphoedema video calling is below.

Communicate with Lymphoedema staff via video

Please contact 01324826222 for more information.

All lymphoedema service home visits are currently cancelled.

Compression garments can be reordered and posted out to you so please contact the clinic if you require new garments if they are not already on prescription.

Please note having lymphoedema or lipoedema does not make you more at risk of developing COVID19. However, if you have other illnesses/ conditions then that may make you more at risk. If you are unwell and have COVID19 symptoms then please follow the government advice.

There is further information on COVID19 and lymphoedema in a fact sheet on the Lymphoedema Support Network website (https://www.lymphoedema.org/) as well as helpful videos for self management.

The LymEx app is also free to download from app store or google play and you may find this useful.

Remember self management is something you have been doing well on a daily basis and it is particularly important to continue at this time. Please contact the clinic if you need further advice.

LYMPHOEDEMA GENERAL INFORMATION

Lymphoedema is a collection of lymph fluid which cannot drain away.  It can be caused by a variety of factors including cancer, cancer treatments, trauma, injury or genetic causes. The result is swelling – often of the limbs but other parts of the body such as the head and neck or the trunk can be affected too.

Initially when people are referred to the Forth Valley Lymphoedema Service, they are assessed by a Lymphoedema Practitioner who will provide the appropriate care and advice. For some people referral to the specialist lymphoedema clinic may be required.

As  lymphoedema is a chronic condition, the aims of treatment are individualised to help people manage this as independently as possible. Skin care, gentle exercise and sometimes compression garments and self massage are all part of the long term management of lymphoedema. 

Treatment at the specialist clinic may additionally involve a short course of specialist bandaging, sometimes in combination with gentle skin massage (manual lymphatic drainage). Following this compression garments are fitted to be worn daily.

 Once the swelling has stabilised and people are confident in their self management regime, then they can be discharged from the Specialist Clinic either for continued monitoring by their Lymphoedema Practitioner or by their GP with the understanding that they can be referred back to the Specialist Clinic at any time if required.