Foot Care

  • Keep feet, lower extremities, garments and socks clean.
  • Before cutting toenails, soak in lukewarm water for at least 10 minutes.
  • Trim nails carefully. If you have a problem trimming your toenails you should contact a podiatrist. Be sure to tell them you have lymphedema.
  • Avoid cutting cuticles.
  • Avoid over the counter medications for calluses and corns as they can burn the skin. Seek assistance from a podiatrist for these problems.
  • Avoid walking in bare feet, sandals and open toed shoes.
  • Always check feet and toes for cuts, scrapes or irritations that could turn into an infection.
  • Wear comfortable, closed toe, proper fitting supporting shoes.
  • Avoid hot tubs, saunas and hot baths.
  • When seeing a podiatrist, make sure they are familiar with lymphedema or willing to further educate themselves on lymphedema. You may be the best person to explain it to them.
  • Keep skin moisturized (not while wearing garments).

Nail Care

  • Push cuticles back when grooming fingernails, avoid cutting them.
  • Keep cuticles moist with cream (not while wearing closed hand/finger garment).
  • Trim nails with care.
  • Avoid getting manicures, artificial nails and wearing nail polish.
  • Always check hands and fingers for cuts, scrapes, or irritations that could turn into an infection.
  • Keep arm, hands and finger clean. Wash with a mild soap.
  • Wear clean compression garments.
  • Use rubber gloves when hand washing dishes or clothes.
  • When doing outside work or gardening wear protective gloves.
  • Avoid high heat saunas, hot tubs and  hot baths.
  • Avoid carrying heavy objects with affected arm.
  • Avoid injections, blood work, and blood pressure cuffs on affected arm (if both arms are affected choose better limb or use leg, if not affected).
  • Keep skin moisturized (not while wearing garments).  

For more information on proper care of finger and toe nails visit

Skin and Nail Care in Lymphedema Management-


For information please visit the NLN position paper on air travel

Air Travel and its Impact on Lymphedema (Video)

Lymphoedema and Air Travel: a Review

Avoiding Lymphedema Or Keeping It In Check


Avoid Temperature Extremes

  • hot baths, hot tubs and hot showers
  • Turkish baths, saunas
  • burns (cooking, smoking,sunburn)
  • travel in hot or cold climates

 Avoid Infections

  • insect bites
  • manicures and pedicures
  • vaccinations, venipunctures or acupuncture in affected limb
  • pet scratches
  • skin punctures and cuts
  • venography or lymphography on the affected limb
  • gardening -wear gloves

Avoid Blunt Trauma

  • lifting heavy objects
  • tennis or golf
  • blood pressure cuffs
  • tight clothing, especially bra straps
  • heavy breast prosthesis
  • rings, watches, bracelets which could be constrictive

Source: Dr. Vodder’s brochure—more info or  

Coping With Lymphedema


Lymphedema Psychological Coping-

Your Emotions and Self Image with Lymphedema-

Book Suggestions

  1. Overcoming the Emotional Challenges of Lymphedema
    Elizabeth McMahon, Ann Ehrlich
  2. Lymphedema: A Breast Cancer Patient’s Guide To Prevention And Healing
    Jeannie Burt& Gwen White, P.T
  3. Coping with Lymphedema
    Joan Swirsky, RN&Diane Sackett Nannery
  4. Living Well With Lymphedema
    Ann B. Ehrlich, Alma Vinje – Harrewijn, Elizabeth J. McMahon
  5. Foundations Of Manual Lymph Drainage
    Michael Foeldi MD, Roman Strossenreuther
  6. Lymphedema – Understanding and Managing Lymphedema After Cancer Treatment
    American Cancer Society and Sam Donaldson
  7. Voices of Lymphedema: stories, advice, and inspiration from patients and therapists
    Ann B. Ehrlich
  8. 100 Questions & Answers About Lymphedema
    Saskia R. J. Thiadens, Paula aj. Satewart, Nicole L. Stout
  9. Lymphedema Management: The Comprehensive Guide for Practitioners
    Joachim E. Zuther
  10. Lymphedema Caregiver’s Guide: Arranging and providing home care
    Mary Kathleen Kearse, Elizabeth Jone McMahon, Anne Ehrlich, Paula J. B. Stewart
  11. The Journey Surviving Breast Cancer And Managing Lymphedema
    Freda Whalen – Plues
  12. Foeldi’s Textbook of Lymphology: for physicians, and lymphedema therapists
    Michael Foeldi MD
  13. Lymphedema and Lipedema Nutrition Guide: foods, vitamins, minerals, and supplements – Chuck Ehrlich, Emily Iker, Karen Louise Herbst, Linda-Anne Kahn, Dorothy D. Sears, Mandy Kenyon, Elizabeth McMahon, Felicitie Daftuar

Free Online Mental Health Course


Hello, my name is Amber. I’m writing from the Online Therapy Unit at the University of Regina.

I wanted to let you know that we offer a free online mental health course to people with chronic health conditions. The course is a research project that employs Cognitive Behavioural Therapy techniques to address anxiety and depression symptoms resultant from a chronic condition, such as Lymphedema. I thought that many of the clients and people that you are in contact with could benefit from the knowledge and ideas presented in the course. There is more information on our website, including the specifics of eligibility to the research project: Anyone is welcome to apply, and then book an appointment for a telephone screening call with one of our staff members, to determine if the course is a good fit for their situation.

Also, know that we can send out posters, or promotional cards for you to share with clients. And/or, one of our e-therapists, Lee Bourgeault, could visit you or a client group to give a presentation about the course, and this mode of therapy.

Please be in touch with any questions.
Amber Klatt
Clinical Research Associate