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Oxford Lymphoedema Service

The Lymphoedema service is a specialist nurse led service, supporting patients with Lymphoedema no matter what the cause. The service also supports patients with Lipoedema and is run by nurses with specialist training in the management of Lymphoedema and Lipoedema.

There is no cure for Lymphoedema or Lipoedema, but with the right treatment the symptoms can be improved and managed well. We can offer advice, treatments and education, and support patients to self-manage their condition.

What is Lymphoedema?

Lymphoedema is a build-up of lymph fluid within the tissues in a part of the body that creates a swelling. This occurs if the lymph nodes and lymph vessels that carry the lymph fluid away are not working properly. It can affect any part of the body from head and neck to feet and toes.

It can be caused by many different reasons.

What is Lipoedema?

Lipoedema is a condition whereby there are abnormal fat cells that cause excess fatty tissue. It mainly affects women. It commonly affects the hips and legs, but can affect arms as well. It can be very painful.

When is the Lymphoedema service available?

The service is available Monday to Friday with evening clinics on Mondays and Thursdays.

What happens after I am referred to the Lymphoedema service?

If you have been referred to the Lymphoedema Clinic you will be assessed by one of the Specialist Nurses.

The appointment time for your first visit will be between one to two hours. The nurse will ask about your medical history and your symptoms and how your condition affects you. The nurse will examine you to assess the area of swelling.

A treatment plan will be advised and may involve one or a combination of treatments such as Manual Lymphatic Drainage, compression garments, bandaging, pneumatic pump or Kinesiotape.

The nurse will discuss and advise on skin care, exercise and any lifestyle changes that may help to manage the Lymphoedema or Lipoedema.

Following your first visit and assessment any further follow up appointments will be approximately three quarters of an hour long.

The amount of appointments needed may vary dependent on treatment, but the aim is to be able to continue self-management at home.

How can I be referred to the Lymphoedema service?

You can be referred to the service by your GP, Hospital Consultant or any Medical team involved in your care, Community Nurse or Specialist Nurse.

Referrals can be made by using our referral form on this website and sent to our clinic email or they can be electronically sent by your GP through Electronic Referrals System (ERS) – NOTE we are waiting to be live on the system.

Internal departments of OUH NHS Trust can refer via our Electronic Patient Record (EPR) system.

For more about making a referral to any Sobell House service, please see our make a referral page here.

How can I contact the Lymphoedema service?

You can email us at [email protected] or telephone us on 01865 225864.