What Qualifications Should My Lymphedema Surgeon Have?

peru11If you’re a Houston breast cancer patient, and you are obese, have had radiation, or you’ve had lymph nodes removed as part of your breast cancer treatment, it’s possible that you will experience lymphedema. Lymphedema is when your lymphatic and circulatory systems malfunction, causing lymph fluid to collect in your arm. This collection of extra lymph fluid causes swelling that can be noticeable and painful. There is currently no known cure for lymphedema. However, a lymphedema surgeon, like Dr. Fusi & Dr. Craig, can perform two different types of surgeries to reduce the collection of lymphatic fluid and reduce painful swelling. Lymphedema surgery is a new procedure, and you need to make sure that you choose a Houston lymphedema surgeon who has special qualifications to perform these procedures.

A Lymphedema Surgeon Should Be Trained by an Expert.

Since lymphedema surgeries are still relatively new, there aren’t many Houston lymphedema surgeons trained in these procedures. Dr. Fusi & Dr. Craig are the exceptions. They have both traveled to France to study under Dr. Corrine Becker, a world-class lymphedema surgeon. Due to this unique training, Dr. Fusi and Dr. Craig are skilled in three important procedures that any lymphedema surgeon should know – microsurgery, the lymphedema bypass procedure, and the vascularized lymph node transfer procedure.

A Lymphedema Surgeon Should Be Trained in Microsurgery.

Microsurgery is a key element of either of the two lymphedema surgery options. For a Houston lymphedema surgeon, microsurgery is when the surgeon uses a special microscope – one that magnifies the area by 4 to 40 times power – to enable the surgeon to work with extremely small elements of the body. Microsurgery also includes the use of specialized instruments and surgical techniques. Houston lymphedema surgeons Dr. Fusi & Dr. Craig are both trained in microsurgery.

A Lymphedema Surgeon Should Have Experience Performing a Lymphedema Bypass.

Before you choose a Houston lymphedema surgeon, you want to make sure that he or she has ample experience in the procedure you will be having. This is why it’s important that your Houston lymphedema surgeon is experienced in performing a lymphovenous bypass and vascularized lymph node transfers. Lymphovenous bypass is when your lymphedema surgeon bypasses existing lymph pathways and creates new ones via microsurgery. As you recover, your lymphatic system will begin using these newly created lymph pathways, thus hopefully helping to reduce the collection of lymph fluid and swelling in your arm.

A Lymphedema Surgeon Should Also Have Experience Performing Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer.

Lymphedema bypass isn’t an option for everyone experiencing lymphedema. This is why your Houston lymphedema surgeon should also be experienced in vascularized lymph node transfer. With this surgical procedure, a healthy lymph node, such as one from the groin, is transplanted via microsurgery to the underarm to help promote a healthy flow of lymphatic fluid in your arm. Both Dr. Fusi & Dr. Craig are trained in vascularized lymph node transfers, too.

I Have Lymphedema. How Do I Proceed?

If you’re a Houston breast cancer patient with lymphedema, you don’t need to suffer through this pain.

Call Dr. Fusi & Dr. Craig for a consultation and full examination at (713) 322-6073.