domingo, 11 de noviembre de 2018

IS THERE DISTRESS ASSOCIATED TO UNDERTREATMENT OF LYMPHOEDEMA - PSYCHOLOGIC AND SOCIAL SEQUELAE OF UNTREATED ELEPHANTIASIS – COPING PSYCHOLOGICALLY WITH LYMPHOEDEMA - PRIMARY LYMPHOEDEMA - SECONDARY LYMPHOEDEMA - LYMPHATIC DYSFUNCTION

Many people who suffer from chronic diseases that entails joint physical, organic and functional limitations like lymphedema, may experience some level of social isolation, depression, embarrassment, and despair. In many cases what else could be foreseen, if at the same time the condition is untreated or undertreated with ineffective solutions. 



Patients can't be expected not to have distress and emotional problems, when they are in the dramatic situation of seeing their health condition worsening. The logical procedure is to first solve problems of access to good reduction treatment, and then manage the psychological distress, if it still exists.


Conserning lymphedema and psychology, how are people affected by lymphedem-Stage 4-elephantiasis, supposed to behave socially? Are they expected to have a happy and merry tranquil life without treatment, and serenely accept their possible tragic future. How can people accept their condition when being untreated or undertreated with cheap and ineffective programs, which don't work to reduce and restore the limb volume. What quality of life expectancy are people supposed to have, knowing the fatal outcome this disease might await them. 



Lymphedema is not in itself a psychopathology, nor does it predispose individuals to poor mental health. What lymphedema needs is good compression treatment and garments for reduction and maintenance of oedema, and what influences individuals with neglected and untreated diseases to be frustrated and depressed, is precisely for being medically neglected and untreated. For information on what is the bet treatment for lymphedema:



Psychological distress related to medical conditions is not something new, and no matter what illness or context, the impact of chronic diseases usually always affect peoples lives, but specially when there are difficulties to access good treatment options. Patients must first access to correct treatment for their illness, and then be treated psychologically if needed. 

Self-care support and activities are important, but lymphedema patients also need at the same time, access to good reduction therapy and compression garments, to control the progression of the disease.


If patients with lymphedema worldwide with lymphatic dysfuncion, including lymphatic filariasis and podoconiosis, are left untreated or undertreated, it's like abandoning people to their fate, a future of progressive swelling towards final stage 4-elephantiasis, characterized by severe disfigurement, disability, and life-threatening complications. In this case, instead of a psychological problem affecting people, it is lack of access to good treatment options that provokes the stress factors, which could also be considered a big medical social-ethical problem too.

References:
Voices from the Shadows: Living with Lymphedema
Diagnosis and Treatment of Lymphedema Following Breast Cancer: A Population-based Study
Complete Decongestive Therapy Treatment for lymphedema and its relationship with Patients Psychological and Physical characteristics:
Lymphoedema management: an international intersect between developed and developing countries. Similarities, differences and challenges.
Old people with lymphedema
Interesting document "Podoconiosis stigma scale" that even though focused on Africa, it adapts perfectly to all Primary and Secondary lymphedema alike, to measure the psycholgical impact of having to live with lymphedema.



Articles which may also interest you: 
(Click on the texts)










  • WHAT KIND OF DOCTOR TREATS LYMPHEDEMA/LYMPHOEDEMA - WHAT TYPE OF DOCTOR IS SPECIALIZED IN LYMPHATIC DYSFUNCTION - WHICH MEDICAL SPECIALITIES ARE RELATED TO LYMPHEDEMA













CLICK ON THE TEXTS 
TO SEE  LYHMPHEDEMA INCIDENCE 
AND PREVALENCE








CAMPAIGN
 


For global awareness it is being asked that the 
WHO - WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION
name: 
"LYMPHEDEMA - AWARENESS & CURES"
as the World Health Day campaign 

  

  KATHY BATES
LYMPHEDEMA EMBASSADOR


SIGN THE PETITION HERE






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