Lower Extremity Lymphedema & Melanoma

Last Modified: March 2, 2008

Question:

Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"

What is the likelihood of developing lymphedema following a dissection of the external lymph nodes of the groin area for treatment of Stage III melanoma? Is lower extremity lymphedema more common or worse than arm lymphedema?

Of the percentage of patients who develop lower extremity lymphedema after such a procedure, what percentages are manageable, severe and debilitating? (I have been told that there can be excessive pain and splitting of the skin--how likely is this?)

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