Edema & Lymphedema in Foot Care
Many of our patients are affected by lower extremity swelling, but edema and lymphedema are unique to each patient. More often than not, elevation simply isn't enough, and as foot care nurses our understanding of edema and lymphedema is critical so we can develop better protocols for our practice.
There are a wide range of clinical causes for edema, whether the root of the problem is systemic or localized. Here, we'll discuss the differentiating factors between edema and lymphedema, and how to identify the various types of swelling using the patient's history, taking pitting measurements and more.
Edema needs to be treated. As a foot care nurse, you'll be able to make recommendations to your patients, such as diet changes, compression therapy and elevation. To make the best assessments, it's also crucial that you know your patients' med list; we'll cover a variety of drugs that cause leg edema, such as calcium channel blockers and Estrogen, pieces of knowledge that will help us to quickly determine when we should speak to the primary care physician to discuss changes in treatment.
In cases where medication adjustments, a cardiac and renal workup or an ultrasound might be beneficial, you'll be able to provide a direct link between patient and doctor, something that will be hugely beneficial to your patient.
Compression Therapy for Lower Extremity Swelling
In this video we will discuss all of the treatment steps for edema and lymphedema, including skin care, exercises, manual drainage and compression. Dr. Julia will thoroughly explain the medical purposes of each and how to break treatment up into phases of active intervention and self-management.
We'll discuss the benefits of compression wraps; which types of bandages to use and how to wrap the patient's leg correctly. We'll learn about different bandage stretch mechanics, and how these affect your patients' edema.
Dr. Julia will show how long and short stretch bandage mechanics can affect resting pressure, working pressure, padding and bandage slippage, and will demonstrate wrapping techniques that are appropriate for the Unna boot.
We'll also discuss how the long stretch multi-layer bandage system can deliver a range of mmHg, and how you'll be able to determine how much pressure and how many bandages are needed using visual cues, patient feedback and ABI testing.
Although we have no affiliation with any brand name products, this video will also recommend a range of products we've personally found success with when treating edema and lymphedema. These will include bandages, garments, wraps and more; you'll learn how to choose them and how to apply them correctly and with ease, as well as which products to avoid.
This video provides 1.5 continuing education credits for nurses and other health care providers who are preparing to become certified or re-certified in routine foot care. Our videos cover a range of topics relevant to the field of routine foot care, which you will be able to apply in your existing career or use to move into a different health care environment. If your goal is to work independently as a foot care provider, check out our video that explains all of the ins and outs of marketing your own practice.
This is a downloadable video. We will send you a link for the download shortly after receiving your payment. To receive 1.5 Nursing CEs, please also complete the accompanying online test.