Fiona Fewer is the Senior Oncology/ Lymphoedema Physiotherapist at University Hospital Waterford. She studied in The School of Physiotherapy, Trinity College Dublin and graduated in 2000.
She trained in The Vodder Technique Manual Lymphatic Drainage in Austria in 2004 and was appointed to her current position in the same year. She provides a regional service in University Hospital Waterford for oncology related lymphoedema patients.
Physio Department Contact Details: (051) 842330
Physiotherapy after breast and lymph node surgery
If you undergo breast and lymph node surgery, you will be commenced on a programme of arm and shoulder exercises. The aim of the exercises is to restore normal movement, strength and posture as soon possible after surgery. If necessary, you will be advised regarding the prevention of lymphoedema. On discharge from University Hospital Waterford, your physiotherapy care will be transferred to your local physio provider- primary care centre, local hospital or health centre.
Lymphoedema after breast and lymph node surgery
Lymphoedema is a long-term chronic swelling of an area of the body (usually arm) caused by a build up of lymphatic fluid in the body’s tissues. This happens when the lymphatic system which normally drains fluid away is unable to work properly.
Patients affected by breast cancer are at risk of developing lymphoedema due to a blockage by the tumour itself, but more commonly as a secondary complication of cancer treatments- lymph node removal and radiotherapy.
The main ways to treat lymphoedema are:
- Skin care
- Compression Garments
- Rest and elevation
- Exercise and activity