Tonia raises awareness of Paediatric Lymphoedema
Tonia has attended Lymph Adventure Wales, an event where young people with lymphoedema and their families were invited to a fun event where they had the opportunity to take part in a host of activities, whilst also gaining access to practical advice and guidance.
The event was organised by Lymphoedema Network Wales, which was established to help increase the knowledge and skills of medical practitioners who manage lymphoedema in children and young people.
In Wales, lymphoedema is a growing condition with 140 children and young people receiving care. Lymphoedema is a chronic swelling to parts of the body due to lymphatic failure. It can be the side-effect of surgical and radiotherapy treatment for cancer, but it is also linked to faulty genes or a result of infection of injury. Having the condition affects individuals physically, psychologically and socially.
This condition can affect people of all ages and occur in any part of the body. For children, the physical impact includes pain, swelling, reduced range of movement, skin changes, decrease in muscle strength, difficulty in walking, running, playing, and grip function.
Lymph Adventure Wales follows on from the Welsh Government, who in 2015 created a dedicated national paediatric specialist post for paediatric lymphoedema. This post was the first of its kind in the UK and is helping to ensure that more lymphoedema care for the 54 children with the debilitating condition in Wales are provided closer to home in the future, instead of families facing long journeys to specialist centres in London and Liverpool.
“Wales is setting the bar high in providing services to children and young people”.
Tonia said “It was great to discuss paediatric lymphoedema was the Lymphoedema Network Wales team – in Wales this team are setting the bar high in providing services to children & young people. I want to help raise awareness about this condition and the support people can receive.”