One of the great medical advances in the approach to lymphedema is the screening program for an early diagnosis, aimed at patients who have undergone breast cancer, and also for those who have suffered from ovarian cancer or patients who have gone through a prostate cancer or melanoma and they also have a risk of lymphedema.
The screening program is based on a test using the indocyanine green fluorescence scanner. The indocyanine green scanner, also known as PDE, has been shown to be much more sensitive than lymphogamagraphy and other imaging tests.
The treatment consists on a microinjection of indocyanine green in the arm or leg; a simple test that can be done in the consultation. The green coloration allows us to see how is the lymph transportation in the limb affected by the cancer treatment, and compare it with the healthy limb. Thus, before any increase in volume, feeling of heaviness, lymphangitis, etc appears, it can be detected if there is a malfunction as a result of the lymph node surgery done previously.
We suggest you an appointment three months after completing your cancer treatment, for an initial consultation and an examination with ICG lymphography.
1. If the result of the scanner is normal, then we will repeat the scanner every six months for another three years to make sure that lymphedema is detected before even you are aware of the symptoms.
2. If early signs of lymphedema are seen on ICG lymphography
, you will be given the opportunity to discuss super microsurgery for lymphedema prevention with one of our experienced surgeons. Early surgery can catch lymphedema before the debilitating swelling of the limb has begun.