Why Tracking Symptoms Matters

Why tracking symptoms matters
Why tracking symptoms matters

Knowing exactly which symptoms you have, how long you’ve had them, and how they are progressing can help doctors identify the cause of your swelling and put you on a path to managing your condition.

You can also show your healthcare providers which treatments you’ve tried, and how they impacted your symptoms. The combination of symptom and treatment tracking over time can help you make significant improvements to your health and quality of life.

Symptoms that may indicate a medical condition

Pay particular attention to symptoms that get worse over time, and that don’t respond or don’t completely resolve using non-invasive treatments.

If you notice the following symptoms, ask your doctor if you might have lymphedema or lipedema. These conditions are chronic and progressive, and getting an early diagnosis can make a significant difference in your quality of life.

Lymphedema symptoms include:

  • Tight or tingling feeling over the affected area
  • Heavy, tired, or achy limbs
  • Pain or discomfort in the affected area
  • Skin changes
  • Indentations in the skin pressure is applied (this is called pitting)
  • Fibrous, spongy-feeling skin
  • Hardening skin over time
  • Large and swollen affected limb

Lipedema symptoms include:

  • Legs, calves, or arms that are disproportionately larger than the rest of the body
  • Fatty tissue that is resistant to diet or exercise builds up on one part of the body
  • Pain, tenderness, and easy bruising in the affected limb(s)
  • Small lumps of fat under the skin that increase in number and size over time, and become thick and hard

Tracking symptoms over time can help you talk with your doctor to find the right diagnosis and the right treatment, preventing long-term damage and improving your quality of life.