respiratory failure

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respiratory failure

Postby davef » Wed Apr 14, 2010 7:10 pm

i was just wondering if lymph would cause some one to into respiratory failure it happened to me i spent 9 days in a drug induced coma and my drs. dont know what might have caused it so if any body has an answer i would appreciate some feed back thanks dave
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Re: respiratory failure

Postby patoco » Thu Apr 15, 2010 7:49 am

Hi Dave

This is a fairly complex question and before I give my response, I just want to be sure that you understand I am not a medical professional nor have I had any formal medical training. I base my opinions on (1) 57 years of experience in living with lymphedema (2) intense research using evidence based science/medicine (3) experience of lymphedema patients from throughout the world and what they themselves have experienced with this condition.

There is now substantial information available in the medical literature regarding lung problems and lymphedema.

One way this can occur is as a result of lymphatic failure in the thoracic duct and/or in the right side drainage system. Both of these are central to where the lymph is dumped back into the vascular system whereby the body removes it from our body.

This, plus lymphatic failure in the abdomen is what occurred to me. As a result, I have serious pleural effusions

see* ... usions.htm

and must drain my lungs every three day, removing aprox. 620 ml from each lung.. In this initial period - the first couple years, I had quite a number of pneumothorax as well. It seems like i was in and out of the hospital due to this just about every month.

This can also occur if your ab/chest lymphatics are damaged or injured such as might happen with radiation treatment or a trauma injury.

You can also be born with malformed a/chest lymphatics and this may not be detected until suddenly you have a problem.

Finally, there is a very serious medical condition that presents with general lymphedema itself. This is called pulmonary lymphangiectasia: ... ctasia.htm

This condition until very recently was almost always fatal. As great strides have been made in diagnosing and treating it, the future looks much brighter now then it did. The link will give you info on it.

Lymphatic problems in the chest, thoracic region and/or right side are usually totally overlooked as most of the tests (lymphoscintigraphy - see* ... intigraphy) are 99.99% done to locate lymphatic blockages in the legs and/or arms. Thus these regions are overlooked. In 2007 I had an "all-over" body one done which showed the various lymphatic shutdowns.

This seems to be a new area of lymphatic research and documentation as well. Not long ago, doctors would have argued until they were blue in the face that such lung issues do not happen with lymphedema. However, in addition to the increased awareness of it in the medical literature, I am frankly astounded by the number of people who have written me with similar problems as I have posted my own experience.

In conclusion, while I can not provide a "hard-core" link between pleural failure and lymphedema, there is enough evidence to cause me to believe that yes, it is a possibility. While it is imperative that your doctors do any and all tests to determine the cause of your pleural failure, they really do need to consider and look into the lymphatics in these areas.

My very best to you and I hope this can help.

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Re: respiratory failure

Postby pinkbear » Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:42 pm

I'm most interested in this topic. I have been experiencing much shortness of breath and all dignostic tests show nothing as of yet. I also have periods of being lightheaded but have not fainted yet.

I have PLE and lipedema. My primary doc suspects pulmonary hypertension due to my PLE.

I read the links posted in the above reply and am confused. Is pulmonary lymphangiectasia in infants only? Can I at age 46 have this if my chest x-rays are showing no fluid? I certainly believe my thorasic duct is clogged as the intensive MLD is just not working. I even use a pump 2 hrs a day and find the fluid just moving upward toward my thorasic duct but not out. Even my LE therapist is frustrated.

Any thoughts?
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Re: respiratory failure

Postby patoco » Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:25 am

Hi again Pinkbear :)

Lymphangiectasia whether its intestinal or pulmonary can always happen to adults as well. Usually, if an infant has it, it is considered primary - but with someone like me, my intestinal lymphangiectasia would be considered secondary as it was actually triggered by the lymphedema and the massive fluid collection in the ab.

They did test me for pulmonary hypertension too - but it was a big negative on that.

Sorry to be short - just can't stay up today. I'll be back.

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