Is Continuous Passive Motion Effective in Patients with Lymphedema? A Randomized Controlled Trial

KIZIL R., DİLEK B., ŞAHİN E., Engin O., Soylu A. C., AKALIN E., ...More

LYMPHATIC RESEARCH AND BIOLOGY, vol.16, no.3, pp.263-269, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 16 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1089/lrb.2017.0018
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.263-269
  • Keywords: continuous passive motion, lymphedema, quality of life, function, BREAST-CANCER-TREATMENT, PREDICTIVE FACTORS, ARM MORBIDITY, IMPACT, PREVALENCE, DIAGNOSIS, THERAPY
  • Dokuz Eylül University Affiliated: Yes


Background: In this randomized controlled study, we aimed to evaluate the effect of shoulder flexion exercise using continuous passive motion (CPM) on lymphedema during the treatment of breast cancer-related lymphedema (BCRL). Methods: Thirty patients with BCRL were enrolled and completed the study. Fourteen patients were treated with complete decongestive therapy (CDT) and CPM in the intervention group, and 16 patients were treated with CDT alone (control group) for 15 sessions. The main outcome measures were included; the shoulder range of motion (ROM) assessed with a goniometer, limb volume difference measured using the water immersion method, function with the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH), and the quality of life using the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy for Breast Cancer (FACT-B4). Lymphedema volume measures were taken at baseline, on days 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 10, and 15; and shoulder ROM, FACT-B4, and DASH were taken at baseline and on day 15. Results: All subjects were similar at baseline. After treatment significant improvement was found in ROM, volumetric differences, DASH, and FACT-B4 scores in both groups. No significant differences were observed in the volumetric differences, ROM, and the DASH, and FACT-B4 scores between the groups, except for the FACT-B4 physical well-being subscores, which were better in intervention group. Conclusion: Our study results showed that CPM did not contribute to the reduction of BCRL.