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90Life Research  2019, Vol. 2 Issue (4): 160-164    DOI: 10.12032/life2019-0720-408
Intervention and treatment of upper limb lymphedema with traditional Chinese medicine
Qiuhua Li1, Yuehai Ma1, Ning Wang1, Ying Hu2, Zhaozhe Liu3,*()
1The Second hospital of Liaoning University of Chinese Medicine, Shenyang, Liaoning
2Shengjing Hospital of China Medicine University, Shenyang, Liaoning
3Northern Theater Command General Hospital, Shenyang, Liaoning.
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Breast cancer is a common malignant tumor in women. Because of the clearing of axillary lymph nodes and the radiotherapy of lymph node region, lymphatic dysfunction occurs and lymphatic fluid retards in the interstitial space. These will lead to a series of pathological changes, such as tissue edema, chronic inflammation, tissue fibrosis and fatty fibrosis. Lymphedema is a chronic disease with the feature of slow progression and is currently incurable. The timely treatment and proper care can alleviate the symptoms and improve the quality of life. The internal and external treatment of Chinese medicine intervention is beneficial for upper limb lymphedema, and the purpose of this research is to share our clinical experiences.

Key wordsBreast cancer      Lymphedema      Traditional Chinese medicine     
Received: 31 May 2019      Published: 19 July 2019
Corresponding Authors: Liu Zhaozhe   
Cite this article:

Qiuhua Li, Yuehai Ma, Ning Wang, Ying Hu, Zhaozhe Liu. Intervention and treatment of upper limb lymphedema with traditional Chinese medicine. 90Life Research, 2019, 2(4): 160-164.


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Fig. 1 Illustration of bandage binding therapy.

After a tubular bandage is worn and a cotton pad is wrapped around the tubular bandage, the low-elastic bandage is used to perform gradient pressure dressing on the affected limb.

Fig. 2 Local acupuncture therapy.

Before pricking blood with cupping, Ashi acupoints are chosen for the acupuncture in the swelling upper limbs.

Fig. 3 pricking blood-letting therapy.

Pricking blood with cupping is conducted at nodules and cords to remove blood stasis and reduce tissue fibrosis.

Fig. 4 Pre-treatment and Post-treatment of Lymphedema.

A. Before treatment, swelling, severe fibrosis and anatomical deformity appears in affected forearm and hand. B. After treatment, the swelling, fibrosis and anatomical deformity are improved significantly in affected forearm and hand.

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