Int J Med Sci 2012; 9(4):280-284. doi:10.7150/ijms.3272 This issue Cite
1. Occupational Therapist, PhD in Medicine School in São José do Rio Preto (FAMERP)-Brazil;
2. Physiotherapist Student of the Lato-Sensu Post Graduation Course on Lymphovenous Rehabilitation of FAMERP, Brazil;
3. Head of the Gynecology and Obstetrics Department of the Medicine School in São José do Rio Preto (FAMERP), Brazil;
4. Department of Cardiology and Cardiovascular Surgery of the Medicine School in São José do Rio Preto (FAMERP)-Brazil.
Trial design: A randomized controlled trial was performed to evaluate the effect of the combination of compression therapy with active exercising using a facilitating apparatus on arm lymphedema. Method: Twenty women with a mean age of 63.3 years were evaluated; all had lymphedema resulting from breast cancer treatment. The inclusion criterion was a difference of 200 mL in size between arms. The apparatus used, called 'pulley system', is a vertical iron wheel fixed on a support at a distance of 10 cm from the patient's body. Participants were submitted to two series of active exercises using this facilitating device, one series using a compression sleeve and the other without. Each series consisted of four 12-minute sessions of exercises separated by 3-minute rest intervals. Volumetry was performed before and after each series of exercises. The paired t-test was utilized for statistical analysis (p-value < 0.05). Results: A significant mean reduction (p-value < 0.007) and non-significant mean increase (p-value < 0.2) in volumes were observed during exercising with and without compression, respectively. Conclusion: Controlled active exercising utilizing a facilitating apparatus while wearing a compression sleeve reduces the size of lymphedematous arms.
Keywords: lymphedema, exercising, equipment.