Lymphorrhea is defined as “a condition in which the leaking of the highly proteinaceous fluid from the ruptured lymphatic vessel may drain out as an abnormal flow externally on the skin or stays within a wound.” It is also accounted for as a potential problem for the primary lymphedema.
Normally it is described as the serious drainage of the lymphatic fluid as a result of the damaged lymphatic duct. There could be a large number of reasons behind this eruption of the lymphatic vessel leading to a serious leakage. It is characterized by the dripping and edging of the fluid externally on the surface from the tissues of the skin.
The most vulnerable sites for this disease are the lower limbs and the genital areas which are majorly followed by the continued limitation in the mobility of the specified areas. But other parts of the body can also be affected by this condition which may include, the axillary and inguinal area (more specifically the lymph nodes present in this area) of the body. The elderly population and the palliative patients are considered at greater risk for this condition.
In the case of trickling of fluid as an independent body may appear as clear and colorless but sometimes which may vary from amber or straw-colored to milky white. This is the case when this fluid is directly draining out from the tissue on the external skin. But if the fluid is restrained in any kind of wound present then the clarity and color of this fluid may affect by the condition. Mixing may occur with the exudate from the wound and the color and thickness of the fluid can be investigated from the testing of the exudate.
The amount of the fluid may vary from mild to aggressive dripping resulting in the wetness of bandages, footwear, garments or even bedding.
The clinical presentation of the signs and symptoms of this disease can be seen in the arm or leg of the patient. These symptoms may include;
- Inflammation of the whole arm or leg including fingers or toe
- Inflammation of any specified part of the leg or arm
- Patient may have a feeling of stiffness or heaviness
- Limited range of mobility
- Body aches
- Feeling of discomfort
- The occurrence of periodic infections
- Fibrosis characterized by hard and thick skin
The major cause of this disease is considered to be damage to the lymphatic vessels. There are many reported reasons which may lead to this eruption ultimately leading to the leaking of this protein-rich fluid. These causes may involve;
- Presence of malignant neoplasms in the specified areas
- Any kind of trauma to the skin caused by any insect bite, cut, abrasion, fissure in the dried skin may lead to the flow of lymphatic fluid onto the surface of the skin
- A ruptured lymph cyst
- Bacterial peritonitis
- Pelvic irradiation
- Peritoneal dialysis
- Abdominal tuberculosis
- Insertion of high pressure on the lymph nodes through the skin tissues may lead to the leakage
- High accumulation of the fluid in the lymph nodes may lead to the outburst characterized by the minor prick or stress
There could be some iatrogenic causes which may include;
- Aortic surgery
- Spinal surgery
- Lymph node dissection as a result of any malignancy
Immediate treatment or management is required to stop further complications. But before the choice of treatment option, it is mandatory to investigate the exact cause of the leakage. In this case, certified lymphedema therapists and trained health-care professionals are expected to evaluate the reason behind this condition and suggestion of proper and accurate treatment options.
Generally, a process is recommended by the professionals for the provision of immediate care to the patient which may comprise several steps including;
First of all, cleanse the affected area with water and soap to avoid any kind of infection. After that, any quality moisturizing cream or lotion is suggested to apply on the affected skin to stop the further breakdown to this specified area which may have led to a more serious condition. Lastly, the point of leaking on the skin should be covered with the help of an antiseptic, absorbent and non-adherent bandage to absorb the dripping fluid and avoid any further damage to the skin. While dressing the affected area one should keep in mind that the whole swollen area should be covered to get efficient results.
Lymphorrhea Lymphorrhea Legs
Lower limbs are considered to be the most vulnerable parts of the body and present some clinical and practical problems for the patients as well as the professionals. But the difficulty can be overcome by providing rational care to the lower limb edema. The priority should be the rational diagnosis involving the investigation of the exact underlying cause and then the provision of the proper medical care. It can be treated with sterile bandages, disinfectants, and damage-blocking products.