Well I realised that it is a while since I did an update on myself, so here it is!! I guess the reason I have not written about myself is that I seem to have reached a plateau, I have also lost complete perspective on what my leg was like before!! I think the difference I see at this stage is that it responds better to treatment, the compression stockings work better, the Ready Wraps work better and MLD works better, I think!! It is so hard to tell. I am wearing a compression stocking during the day, none at night and it does look best in the morning so that is a good sign. I became really obsessed with my leg, measuring everyday and getting upset if it went up and happy when it went down!! In other words I was driving myself nuts!!
Consequently I had to make a change and stop the focus on the leg only. I was also protecting the knee where the nodes went in, afraid to harm them or cause the knee to swell. I am now looking at myself holistically so as to help the lymphatics in my whole body. I am juicing, drinking lots of water, lemon juice in the morning and a little Apple cider vinegar in my water during the day.. I hope this all helps, I must say I am feeling better, more energy, less moody and more positive.
The other area I am working on is to regain fitness, previously protecting my knee I was not doing enough. The knee would swell and I would stop for a few days. Now everyday I either walk or walk in a pool. I bought a pedometer and try to do the 10,000 steps a day but this is harder than I thought, as that for me is about 5km every day. I can do it but it is finding the time and sitting on the computer does not give you extra steps! I have also bought myself some compression exercise tights instead of wearing a compression stocking and track pants or shorts. They are not meant for Lymphoedema but they seem to do the job ok when I go for a walk. You can buy Skins by Nike or the ones I have are called High performance by Puma… I like them as they make me feel like everyone else doing exercise and they are NOT BEIGE!!!! I do get back into my stockings when I get home but for a while I can dream of not needing them!! My legs look fairly alike especially at the bottom but by left leg feels more solid or firm and it does swell with no compression. The middle of my leg seems to have reached a plateau about one half inches bigger than the good leg when I wake in the morning…. But I have stopped measuring as I would compare each leg everyday…
The scars are healing really well and I will take more photos. The one on my neck is just a thin line along my collar-bone, it had been bumpy but that is all gone now. The scar at the side of my knee has gone down a lot from being very swollen, the side of my knee is getting flatter. This is the area where the new nodes are and it changes during the day, sometimes firm and a bit raised, as if there is fluid and then in the mornings quite flat, is this the nodes working??? Who knows!! On September 4th I am due back at Macquarie university Hospital to have an MRI which measures the fluid in the good and bad leg, which is then compared. The readings come out as % extra in the Lymphedema leg. I will also have a Lymphasytagraph to measure the passage of the lymph from my toes to groin. I am not sure which test is worse the noisy, banging MRI (I will ensure I have earplugs this time) or the Lymphesytegraph where they inject radioactive fluid between each toe! That will be a fun day but I hope the results show at least a little improvement.
So after surgery so far… Do I still have Lymphedema? Yes but I believe easier to control and I am told less likelihood of infections… Yeh!! This is all still a work in progress and if nodes start to grow it will take time to see real results….