Navigation Links
Obesity May Raise Odds for Painful Leg Condition
Date:5/30/2012

By Denise Mann
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- The health risks associated with being overweight and obese are well publicized, but new research may add another condition to this list: leg lymphedema, pain and swelling due to blockage of the lymph nodes in the groin area.

Lymphedema in the arms traditionally is associated with breast cancer surgery that involves removal of or damage to the lymph nodes. A blockage in the lymphatic system can prevent proper drainage of lymph fluid. As fluid builds up, pain and swelling can occur.

In a letter published in the May 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Arin Greene and colleagues at Children's Hospital Boston reported on 15 obese individuals with swelling in both legs. They diagnosed five of these individuals with leg lymphedema, and the cause of the condition was obesity.

"We now believe that obesity is a risk factor for lymphedema if the body-mass index becomes greater than 60," Greene said. "It only seems to affect the legs, but we have not investigated the arms."

Individuals in the study who had a body-mass index (BMI) lower than 54 had normal lymphatic function. The average BMI of the patients with lymphedema was 70; BMI of 30 or greater is considered obese. BMI is a measure of body fat based on an individual's height and weight.

Other risk factors for leg lymphedema include injury to the lymph nodes in the groin because of infection, surgery or radiation. In addition, people can be born with the condition. Regardless of the cause, leg lymphedema can cause pain, swelling and infections.

Although there is no cure for lymphedema, compression and significant weight loss may help relieve the pain and swelling, Greene said.

Lymphedema in the legs manifests itself as swelling, pain, discomfort, tightness in the skin, decreased flexibility and difficulty walking, said Cathy Kleinman-Barnett, a lymphedema specialist at the Lymphedema/Edema Management Program at Northwest Medical Center in Margate, Fla.

"Obesity causes lymphedema because the sheer additional weight puts too much pressure on the lymph nodes in the groin area, compromising the system," she said. "This causes a fluid backup like a clogged drain. Skin can thicken, harden and become red, dry and warm to touch."

It's important to treat the condition, she added, because "it can really interfere with a person's quality of life in a physical and a psychosocial way as people may be less inclined to go out and interact with others."

Kleinman-Barnett said lymphedema therapists can prescribe a program of manual lymphatic drainage, which helps direct lymph flow out of the congested areas. Recommendations on skin care, compression bandaging and exercises also can help, she said.

More than 35 percent of U.S. adults are obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Obesity already is known to increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and certain types of cancer.

More information

Get tips for preventing lymphedema at the National Lymphedema Network.

SOURCES: Cathy Kleinman-Barnett, lymphedema specialist, Lymphedema/Edema Management Program, Northwest Medical Center, Margate, Fla.; Arin Greene, M.D., Children's Hospital, Boston; May 31, 2012, New England Journal of Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. As Obesity Rates Rise, Cases of Kidney Stones Double: Study
2. Obesity genes may influence food choices, eating patterns
3. A systems approach to preventing obesity in early life
4. Study shows link between pre-pregnancy obesity and lower test scores
5. U.S. Report Outlines Strategies to Prevent Obesity
6. U.S. Obesity Rate Set to Soar, Costing Billions: CDC
7. Research May Point to New Obesity Treatments
8. Rising Obesity Rates Might Mean More Rheumatoid Arthritis
9. Treating childhood obesity: A family affair
10. Mayo Clinic: Obesity epidemic fueling rise in rheumatoid arthritis among women
11. New research finds no association between white potato consumption (baked, boiled mashed) and obesity, Type 2 diabetes or systemic inflammation
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Obesity May Raise Odds for Painful Leg Condition
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... On June 10-11, 2016, A Forever Recovery, a ... and World’s Longest Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, MI, where the rehabilitation facility is ... to some of the world’s leading providers of cereal and other breakfast foods. Its ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... health policy issues and applications at AcademyHealth’s Annual Research Meeting June 26-28, 2016, ... work on several important health care topics including advance care planning, healthcare costs ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar Marathe earned his ... David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal Medicine at Scripps ... in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had the opportunity to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those who have experienced traumatic events may ... to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol abuse, as a coping mechanism. To ... for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers tend to feel a ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda Cheng, an ... Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including robotic Suresmile ... orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. It can ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2016)... June 27, 2016 Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc (Nasdaq: ... under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as ... Celator Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ("Celator"; Nasdaq: CPXX ) ... Daylight Time). As previously announced on May ... definitive merger agreement under which Jazz Pharmaceuticals has commenced ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016  Global Blood Therapeutics, Inc. (GBT) (NASDAQ: ... novel therapeutics for the treatment of grievous blood-based ... closing of its previously announced underwritten public offering ... public offering price of $18.75 per share. All ... by GBT. GBT estimates net proceeds from the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- Dehaier Medical Systems Ltd. (NASDAQ: DHRM ... sells medical devices and wearable sleep respiratory products in ... agreement with Hongyuan Supply Chain Management Co., Ltd. (hereinafter ... 2016, to develop Dehaier,s new Internet medical technology business. ... leverage Hongyuan Supply Chain,s sales platform to reach Dehaier,s ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: