Lymphatic microsurgery to treat lymphedema: Techniques and indications for better results

Francesco Boccardo, Ezio Fulcheri, Giuseppe Villa, Lidia Molinari, Corrado Campisi, Sara Dessalvi, Giuseppe Murdaca, Caterina Campisi, Pier Luigi Santi, Aurora Parodi, Francesco Puppo, Corradino Campisi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study aimed to report new clinical approaches to the treatment of lymphatic disorders by microsurgical techniques based on histological and immunohistochemical findings. The authors' wide clinical experience in the treatment of patients with peripheral lymphedema by microsurgical techniques is reported. Microsurgical methods included derivative lymphatic-venous anastomoses and lymphatic reconstruction by interpositioned vein grafted shunts. In all patients, lymphatic and lymph nodal tissues were sent for histological assessment, together with specimen of the interstitial matrix. Diagnostic investigations consisted in venous duplex scan and lymphoscintigraphy. Results were assessed clinically by volumetry performed preoperatively and postoperatively at 3 to 6 months and at 1, 3, and 5 years. The outcome obtained in treating lymphedemas at different stages was analyzed for volume reduction, stability of results with time, reduction of dermatolymphangioadenitis attacks, necessity of wearing elastic supports, and use of conservative measures postoperatively. Microsurgical lymphatic derivative and reconstructive techniques allow bringing about positive results in the treatment of peripheral lymphedema, above all in early stages when tissular changes are slight and allow almost a complete restore of lymphatic drainage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-195
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of Plastic Surgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013


  • histopathological findings
  • lymphedema
  • microsurgery
  • results
  • techniques

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Medicine(all)


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