Monday, June 26, 2006

No More Tree Trunks!

Today I started occupational therapy for the lymphedema in my legs.  An unfortunately side effect of having cancer, I thought I would just have to live with it.  Then I found out about these massage and compression pump treatments that might at least relieve it.  So I went today for the evaluation and my first treatment.  

I had to get up at the crack of dawn which is probably going to be the biggest down-side of this!  But I guess I can handle that.  I met with a very personable OT who explained the treatments, what my responsibility would be and answered all my questions.  I will have a half hour manual massage and a half hour on the pump twice a week.  They will work on one leg at a time, for a month each.  I’m scheduled through mid-August.  (Yikes!  I haven’t had an actual schedule since I retired!)  They will show me how to wrap my legs to enhance the massage treatments.  I’ll have to keep my legs wrapped all the time.  I can take them off at night and when I’m swimming.  In fact, she said the aqua aerobics class would be very helpful to my treatment.  I really feel like I have a handle on what’s going to happen.  She was very good!

She checked my legs and said considering how long I’ve had the condition, they look very treatable. She didn’t do the manual massage today, but did the pump treatment.  I sat in a recliner and she put this long boot/sleeve that covered my leg from the toe to the upper part of my thigh.  It zipped up and then she connected it to the machine.  If filled with air and then for a half hour applied compression from my toes gradually up my leg; stopped and then started again.  It was actually pretty relaxing!

So I hope nothing happens to screw this up (like my TVS operation!).  I’m looking forward to no more tree trunk legs!

I will be volunteering for the first time at Angels for Animals tonight.  I’ll be working in the reception area.  It’s adoption night so will probably be busy!

I figure I might as well make it a full day and I’m going to try the aqua aerobics at the pool.  Hopefully I can keep up!



Julie S. said...

This sounds like a great plan! I'm anxious to hear how you feel it's going and then to see PICTURES of your NORMAL legs!! Won't that be an exciting day?! Keep us posted!

Lisa G said...

Sounds like this is going to work for you! I'm so happy for you and it's relaxing, that's awesome!

Jami said...

Linda I am sorry that you will have to be getting up so early, but in the long run I am sure you will love what the therapy is doing for you. If I were you I would try to sleep thru the massage. HAHA.