Lymphedema occurs when the capacity of the lymphatic circulation is reduced, either by an obstruction or by an abnormal development of the lymphatic system. Consequently, protein-rich fluid (lymph) accumulates in the soft tissue and due to this accumulation, a swelling of the affected area occurs.
Lymphedema affects 270 million people worldwide and can affect both the upper and lower extremities. Only in Spain, between 1.3 and 1.5 million patients are estimated to be affected by this disease.
In developed countries, the first cause of Lymphedema is secondary to breast cancer, due to the removal or damage of the lymph nodes as a consequence of the oncological treatment. This pathology occurs in 13-40% of patients.
Currently, much progress is being made causing a positive impact on the quality of life of those women, who have felt their lives have considerably improved — although it is still necessary to do much more.