I finally got a diagnosis for the swelling in my leg. I went back to the Vascular Center at Rex Hospital yesterday, and was examined by the Director of Vascular Medicine (seems I’ve become a “problem patient” so they rolled out the big guns).
I have a condition called lymphedema. The irritating thing about it is that I suggested this diagnosis to my doctor back in May (based on internet research) and he said that based on my medical history it was highly unlikely. Then he sent me for a bunch more tests for other stuff.
The good news is that lymphedema is highly treatable. The bad news is that it’s not really curable, only manageable. My doctor has prescribed Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT), which is one of two possible treatments recognized by the medical profession and accepted by the insurance industry.
I have set up a first appointment with a therapist on Thursday. Based on his evaluation, I’ll be going 2-3 times a week for manual drainage/massage therapy and compression bandages. After about 2 months, when the leg is completely drained, I’ll be fitted for compression hosiery. As long as I wear the hosiery every day, that should keep it under control.