San Antonio’s PRMA Offers State-of-the-Art Lymph Node Transfer to Breast Cancer Patients With Lymphedema

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New procedure transplants lymph nodes from groin to underarm, improving and even eliminating lymphedema symptoms.

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This procedure revolutionizes treatment for lymphedema, which has traditionally been treated by compression garments and tissue massage.

A ground-breaking new procedure being offered at San Antonio’s PRMA may be the answer for breast cancer patients suffering painful swelling of the arm known as lymphedema.

Many breast cancer patients have lymph nodes removed from the underarm (axilla) at the same time as mastectomy as part of their breast cancer treatment. Removal of axillary lymph nodes can cause permanent, and often debilitating, arm swelling known as lymphedema. Radiation therapy can also make lymphedema worse.

The new procedure, known as Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer, can significantly improve or even eliminate lymphedema. The surgery involves transferring healthy lymph nodes from the groin to the underarm to replace nodes that were removed or damaged by the breast cancer surgery. It is typically performed in conjunction with delayed DIEP flap breast reconstruction.

Studies show that up to 70 percent of women who have undergone mastectomy or radiation for breast cancer treatment may suffer lymphedema at some point.

Dr. Steven Pisano of PRMA says that the procedure revolutionizes treatment for lymphedema, which has traditionally been treated by compression garments and tissue massage.

“Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer has been shown to permanently reduce or eliminate lymphedema with a very good success rate,” says Pisano. “This could potential help thousands of women suffering from painful and chronic swelling of the arm(s) after mastectomy.”

Christina Bowers, a patient of Pisano’s, says that the swelling in her arm has almost completely resolved after her lymph node transfer and DIEP flap breast reconstruction at the beginning of the year.

“When I woke up from surgery, I noticed an immediate reduction in the pain in my arm,” says Bowers. “I no longer experience swelling in my arm and my overall range of motion is vastly improved.”

For more information on Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer, contact PRMA Plastic Surgery at 800.692.5565.

About PRMA

PRMA Plastic Surgery in San Antonio, Texas, specializes in state-of-the-art breast reconstruction. Procedures offered include the DIEP flap, SIEA flap, GAP flap, TUG flap, fat grafting, Alloderm One-Step, and nipple-sparing mastectomy. Patients are routinely welcomed from across and outside the US. Connect with other patients in our breast reconstruction community on Facebook.

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Brandy Korman
PRMA Plastic Surgery
+1 (800) 692-5565
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since: 09/2011
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