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About this cause:Lymphedema is an abnormal collection of high-protein fluid just beneath the skin. This swelling occurs most commonly in the arm or leg, but it also may occur in other parts of the body including the breast or trunk, head and neck, or genitals. Lymphedema usually develops when lymph vessels are damaged or lymph nodes are removed (often during cancer surgeries), but can also be present when lymphatic vessels are missing or impaired due to a hereditary condition.
Over 7 million Americans are either living with or at risk for developing lymphedema. Yet the condition continues to be misunderstood by medical professionals. Countless patients are prescribed water pills and told to simply “lose the weight,” neither of which address the problem. This lack of understanding, coupled with the physical deformities it causes, makes lymphedema an extremely isolating condition. Our mission here at the National Lymphedema Network is to “Give Voice” to lymphedema, so we’re very excited that Bravelets is giving patients the opportunity to speak out about their condition and raise awareness about lymphedema. For more information about lymphedema, including diagnosis, treatment, and advocacy efforts, visit http://www.lymphnet.org. You can also find us on Facebook under “National Lymphedema Network”—we’d love to see pictures you wearing your Bravelets jewelry!