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Fox Chase Cancer Center Lymphedema Therapists Among First to Receive National Certification

PHILADELPHIA (August 27, 2001) -- Four Fox Chase Cancer Center therapists who specialize in lymphedema are among the first in the nation to take and pass the National Certification Exam for Lymphedema Therapists.

Though these therapists have had extensive training in their field, there had not been an official certification for lymphedema therapy until this year. Wilma T. Morgan, OTR/L, Janice Buhler, MS, PT, OCS, Cheri Doll, MSPT, and Susan Buron, LPTA, received their certification this summer from the Lymphology Association of North America (LANA). LANA is a non-profit corporation composed of physicians, nurses, massage therapists, physical therapists, and occupational therapists experienced in the field of lymphology and lymphedema.

"Receiving certification from the Lymphology Association of North America recognizes the competency and skills these therapist possess for this specialized rehabilitation," said L. Matthew Schwartz, M.D., medical director of rehabilitation medicine at Fox Chase. "Patients should ask their lymphedema specialist if they are certified." Lymphedema is a persistent swelling usually affecting an arm or leg that sometimes occurs after cancer treatment, but is preventable. This complication results from damage to the lymphatic system because of surgery to remove lymph nodes, radiation therapy or the growth of the tumor itself. If a patient starts to experience swelling, early treatment is extremely important. Untreated lymphedema may lead to infections, numbness in the affected limb, inability to move joints, hardening of connective tissue and discomfort or pain.

The Fox Chase lymphedema program provides instruction for appropriate skin care and hygiene, manual lymph drainage, compression bandaging, therapeutic exercises, compression-garment fitting, and home maintenance program. Lymphedema therapy is offered at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Northeast Philadelphia and at its Medical Offices in Bryn Mawr. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 215-728-7000.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, one of the nation's first comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute in 1974, conducts basic and clinical research; programs of prevention, detection and treatment of cancer; and community outreach. For more information about Fox Chase activities, visit the Center's web site at or call 1-888-FOX CHASE.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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