Lymphedema management is a specialty that some massage therapists train in, and many of their clients are breast-cancer survivors who develop lymphedema after having lymph nodes removed.

New research shows that weightlifting slashes lymphedema risk after breast cancer treatment.

Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine say that slowly progressive weight-training program reduces chances of developing lymphedema by as much as 70 percent

“Lymphedema is a dreaded, common side effect of breast cancer treatment. Women worry that they will recover from their cancer only to be plagued by this condition that often limits their ability to work, maintain their homes, and care for their children or grandchildren,” said lead author Kathryn Schmitz, PhD, MPH, an associate professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and a member of Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center. “Our study shows that they now have a weapon to reduce their risk of developing lymphedema,

The research results were presented in December at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium and published online concurrently in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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