Lymphoedema Care SA is now offering consulting services at Blackwood. Karin Stepputtis has been a physiotherapist and specialist in Lymphoedema Management for over 30 years. Karin studied with Prof. Dr. Foeldi (Dr. Vodder Method) in Germany. She is a member of the ALA (Australasian Lymphology Association) and a former ALA South Australia State representative. She is a current member of the ALA national equity committee. Karin is registered on the NLPR (National Lymphoedema Practitioners Register).
As a Physiotherapist she specialises in the lymphatic system and treatment of Lymphoedema, Lipoedema, Venous Oedema and Axillary Web Syndrome (Cording). Her approach is founded on a strong commitment for evidence based best practice, delivering quality treatments in a professional and caring manner.
Lymphoedema Services offered
- Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD), a specialised form of gentle massage in order to enhance the lymph flow
- Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) is a crucial tool to enhance lymph flow and to help to soften fibrosis
- Intermittent Pneumatic Compression Therapy
- A medical device promoting venous and lymphatic flow via an air pump and inflatable sleeves/vests
- Compression bandaging in order to reduce swelling
- Prescription and fitting of compression garments to maintain the achieved reduction
- Treatment of Cording (Axillary Web Syndrome)
- Education on risk reduction
- Education on maintaining the lymph flow through exercise, skin care, and self-drainage
Lymphoedema is characterised by swelling of certain parts of the body, caused by problems with the lymphatic system. Any part of the body can be affected, but it tends to target the arms and legs. Around 300,000 Australians will experience it at any given time.
Normally, fluid and proteins leak into the body tissues regularly from the blood. This tissue fluid bathes the cells, supplies their nutritional needs and receives back the products of their metabolism. The lymphatic system is a network of tubes throughout the body that drains this fluid (called lymph) from tissues and empties it back into the bloodstream. When this system is not working properly, lymphoedema can occur.
Women who have undergone surgery and radiotherapy for treatment of breast cancer are particularly susceptible to lymphoedema of the arm and, sometimes, the adjacent chest wall on the affected side. Men and women who have had surgery and radiotherapy for the treatment of cancer of the prostate, bowel or reproductive systems are also prone to lymphoedema of the legs or groin areas.