Visitor Guidelines For more information about updated Seasonal Visitor Guidelines click here.

Lymphedema treatment added to therapy services

December 21, 2022 

Individuals diagnosed with lymphedema now have local experts to turn to at HSHS St. Francis Hospital. Members of the hospital’s physical therapy team became certified in complete decongestive therapy (CDT). This state-of-the-art treatment recommended by the International Society of Lymphology helps patients suffering from symptoms brought on by lymphedema.

Lymphedema is a condition resulting in the swelling of one or more limbs and often the corresponding quadrant of the trunk, face, neck and/or genitals, caused by the disruption of the lymphatic system. If untreated, swelling will worsen, the tissue can become harder and more painful, and there is an increased risk of infection.

“We are delighted to bring these treatment options to the Litchfield community,” said Blake McAfee, director of rehabilitation services at St. Francis Hospital. “Our therapists were trained by some of the top experts in the field and are ready to help those in our community with lymphedema benefit from this new treatment.”

CDT often includes two to four weeks of treatment and the independent use of compression garments at home. Key treatment components include: 

  • Manual lymph drainage 
  • Compression bandaging 
  • Skin care 
  • Exercise 
  • Compression garment fitting

With treatment adherence and use of compression garments, results may include: 

  • Maintained reduction of swelling 
  • Wound healing and reduced risk of infection 
  • Softened skin texture and improved skin health 
  • Improved quality of life through effective swelling control

Treatment is available at HSHS St. Francis Hospital with a referral from your physician. For more information on lymphedema treatment or any other type of therapy, please contact St. Francis Hospital Outpatient Therapy Services at 217-324-8780.

Lymphedema treatment added to therapy services