Lymphedema and Leg Weakness

Ultima Vez Modificado: 6 de noviembre del 2005

Share article


Imprima English

Question

Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"
I had cervical cancer in 1996 resulting in a radical hysterectomy and radiation treatment. The lymph nodes were also removed. I am experiencing weakness in one leg that will give out without warning or pain. Can lymphedema cause this weakness? I do have slight swelling but keep it at bay with exercise. Should I visit an oncologist for this?

Answer

Lora Packel MS, PT, Coordinator of Cancer Therapy Services for the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, responds:

Lymphedema generally does not cause weakness unless you are using that extremity (arm/leg) less often than usual due to the swelling, in which case the muscle might be deconditioned. Weakness in one leg can be caused by a multitude of orthopedic issues. However, with a history of cervical cancer and radiation therapy, I would strongly recommend a visit to the oncologist. If they rule out medical causes of the leg weakness, including the possibility of local disease recurrence, you could consider visiting a physical therapist who specializes in women's health and/or lymphedema.

Imprima English
News
Weight Lifting May Be Helpful for Lymphedema

Apr 18, 2014 - In women with breast cancer-related lymphedema, weight lifting has no significant effect on limb swelling and results in reduced symptoms and fewer lymphedema exacerbations, according to a study in the Aug. 13 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.



I Wish You Knew

How cancer patients have changed my life

View More



Blogs and Web Chats

OncoLink Blogs give our readers a chance to react to and comment on key cancer news topics and provides a forum for OncoLink Experts and readers to share opinions and learn from each other.




OncoLink OncoPilot

Frente a un nuevo diagnóstico de cáncer o de cambiar el curso de su tratamiento actual? Deje que nuestro personal de enfermería cáncer que ayudan a pasar!

Más información