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Microsurgery after breast cancer treatment may reduce lymphedema effects

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As people all across the country prepare for various forms of breast cancer awareness activities, including Lansing’s Race for the Cure, a recent study indicates that microsurgery may reduce the build-up of lymphatic fluid after breast cancer treatment.

The surgery may help the 30 percent of women who suffer from lymphedema after having their lymph nodes removed or radiated. Reducing swelling could mitigate the pain, weakness and loss of flexibility associated with lymphedema.

The procedure studied by researchers at the University of Texas requires general anesthesia and an overnight stay in the hospital. This is a drastic change from traditional forms of treatment, which range from massage and exercise to compression bandages.