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Lymphedema Chronicles
57 yr old female, bilateral lower extremity
Authored by Anonymous
I was diagnosed with lymphedema of both legs on 6-21-99. I am a 57 yr. old female, with post polio syndrome also. I do not know why I have lymphedema unless it is something to do with post polio and my low immune system. I am sure I have had problems with this for 4 or 5 years but did not know it. I just thought I was just getting heavier

I have been going to my local hospital since last June for massage and wrap. They have had a hard time fitting my legs with stockings they will stay up. But the swelling did go down.

The hospital personnel kept assuring me my insurance would pay and like a fool I did not follow up and the insurance only paid $1500.00 for the 6 months and I can tell you my hospital bill was many many times higher than $1500.00. But because the insurance co. followed the letter of the contract for physical therapy they do not have to pay anymore, it is all up to me and it will take me about 25 or 30 years to pay the hospital, even at a sizable payment each month. The insurance would have paid to have my legs removed but very little to keep them. Does not make sense to me.

I stopped going for treatment in Jan 2000 and within 3 weeks both legs swelled up more than they had been in June 99 when I first started. My Dr. advised me I had no choice but to go back for treatment or loose both legs or my life. Since I am attached to all three I returned to the hospital for treatment. My place of employment had changed insurance companies in Jan and the new insurance company has agreed to transfer my Critical Care Nursing to lymphedema treatment so I will not be out so much monetarily this year, but it will be a several thousand.

My legs are going back down and I will be measured for Custom stockings this week or next and pray they work.

Is there any financial help out there for lymphedema patients?

I can live with lymphedema but not the stress the insurance company has put me through.

Thank you for letting me blow off steam.
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