Maryland’s Health Matters - Upper Chesapeake - Winter 2018

Lymphedema Treatment Article Featuring Hoffy

As I mentioned a few months ago, I was to be featured in an article promoting the new Lymphedema Treatment Program at the University of Maryland’s Upper Chesapeake Medical Center In Bel Air, Maryland.

Eagerly awaiting its release I am proud to share it with you here on Hoffy’s World.  More information about the University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Medical Center and/or the Lymphedema Program can be found at their website at

Lymphedema is a disease I have fought for most of my life.  Through my childhood, such treatments as are offered now were not even thought about let alone available.  I can only imagine where my health would be today if such programs would have existed in the Harford County community then, and I am proud to place my trust and endorsement with this program and with the wonderful staff that works very hard at running it with great care and dedication to their patients.  If you are a Lymphedema sufferer in the Harford County,  Maryland Area I implore you to follow-up with your physician about seeking treatment through this program.


Guaifenesin & Lymphedema – A Self Study – Part 3

The Guaifenesin study has pretty much fizzled out.  Up to a few week ago I had not seen any noticeable effect.  This should not discount the validity of the claim though.  I have had lymphedema for a very long time, so I was not expecting amazing results.  Someone who is fresh to the disease, or nowhere near as advanced as I am might find adequate results from this therapy.  The parameters were also mucked up by a sudden and unexpected family medical crisis that increased my activity levels well beyond their typical balance.  All is well now though.

This will be a topic again later this coming year, hopefully, life will allow a balanced period of time to explore it closer.  I encourage anyone who has been doing their own exploration to by all means share your exploration, either through a comment here or through our own resources.  Knowledge about any advantage against this disease is priceless information that needs to spread like a wildfire.

Guaifenesin & Lymphedema – A Self Study – Part 1

Guaifenesin & Lymphedema – A Self Study – Part 2

Guaifenesin & Lymphedema – A Self Study – Part 2

It has been one week since I began taking Guaifenesin to see if it serves an effect on my Primary Lymphedema.  Granted it has been only one week since taking it twice daily I have seen no directly visible change.  I am not convinced as of yet that it is not effective.  I look at it in the perspective of it has taken 30 some years for me to degrade to the level I am and in all fairness, I think it deserves more than a week to prove its case.

I can say that a lot of the congestion I have felt for a while, through0ut the rest of my body, however, has cleared up real nice.  This overall has made me feel much better.  I will not be increasing any dosages until after one month, and with physician approval.  I will continue my weekly updates on this topic until I am convinced of either its effectiveness or lack thereof.

Guaifenesin & Lymphedema – A Self Study – Part 1

Lately, I have been spending a good bit of time paying attention to Lymphedema discussion groups on Facebook on a variety of topics.  One recent topic that has taken my interest is the use of the medication Guaifenesin as a means of relief and treatment for Lymphedema.

A patent filed on Jun 25, 2001, by Samuel K. Yue, MD. identifies Lymphedema as:

Lymphedema or “high protein edema” is a deficiency, blocking or dysfunction of the lymphatic system that limits the flow of lymph fluid from a body area. Any sustained accumulation of proteins delivered to the body tissue by the blood capillaries, and not removed by the lymphatic system, will cause an accumulation of high protein fluid in the interstitial areas of the body tissues resulting in Lymphedema or “high protein edema”.

I could break the patent down in all of its technical descriptions and details but I will spare you the interpretation.  Dr. Yue’s method of using the expectorant  Guaifenesin to treat Lymphedema and Fibromyalgic patients is quite intriguing, to say the least. I will, however, share this paragraph which explains the of using this for treatment.

The inventor disagrees with the basic assumption and hypothesis on the inner working of guaifenesin. The inventor believes that guaifenesin’s activity is its ability to break down undigested protein, and antigen-antibody complexed protein within the tissues and lymphatic nodes and vessels to reduce fluid accumulation and therefore reduce lymphedema. Guaifenesin is an expectorate and it thins out proteinaceous secretions from our lungs by directly and/or indirectly through stimulating macrophages to breaking the proteins into its amino acids components. The inventor believes that guaifenesin break down the proteins within the blood stream, tissues, and the lymphatic system. By maintaining a high level of guaifenesin within the blood stream, the “foreign” proteins within the tissue, antigen-antibody protein complexes within the lymph nodes will be broken down allowing the broken down amino acid particles to diffuse across the tissue into the lymphatic drainage. With this fluid switch from the lymphatic to the systemic circulation diuresis ensues without affecting the potassium metabolism within the kidney. The inventor has also observed lymphedema that occurs in non-fibromyalgia patients that responds well to guaifenesin therapy resulting in reduction of the swelling. Fibromyalgia patients on guaifenesin have also been observed to have reduction of the painful and swollen lymph nodes. They have also been observed to have different rate of swelling reduction of one extremity versus the other, with the more swollen extremity slowly catching up with the other over time. These observations confirm the hypothesis that guaifenesin works on the “foreign” protein or antigen-antibodies protein complexes within the tissues and lymphatic system. With different size “foreign” protein and antigen-antibody protein complexes, guaifenesin’s action on these proteins in various part of the body will proceed with different rate resulting in different rate of swelling reduction in different part of the bodies.

I encourage you to read the language of the patent and share it with your Physician.  I printed a copy and took it to him.  My Primary Care Physician was quite interested in learning more.  He approved for me to begin taking Guaifenesin, and looks forward to seeing the results, either way, they may go.

I will be starting at 600mg sustained release version twice a day (every 12 Hours) for the first month.  I will be keeping a report at dosage times of noticeable effects and general observation.  I will self-evaluate the effectiveness of the dosage after the first month, and adjust upward as seems appropriate.  I will be reporting this data and the corresponding dosage changes to my Primary Care Provider Electronically as well.

I will be following up on this topic weekly on my Hoffy’s World Blog “Living With Lymphedema” Column and sharing it through the various interest groups on social media as well.

If you have any experience with this means of treatment or are a provider who uses this medicinal therapy I’d love to hear your experiences so please comment either on my blog or on social media.



Pain – The Common Question About Lymphedema

Cover Photo By: CC BY-SA 3.0 Nick Youngson

This article is a from the blog column Living With Lymphedema written by Steve “Hoffy” Hofmeister

The most common question I receive about my Lymphedema or “Milroy’s Disease” is Does It Hurt?  I commonly answer no, as definitions vary on the perception of pain.  Now, my view is not inclusive of all Lymphedema sufferers.  The correct question I suppose in my case is, Do you experience pain as a result of your Lymphedema?  In the case of this question then I would have to answer yes.  You may be asking what is the difference in these questions. Continue reading

Drawinf of Fire Engine

Explaining Lymphedema To A Child (or anyone)

Explaining Lymphedema To A Child (or anyone)

You hear about the Immune System and how it keeps you well and fighting illness.  But a lot of people do not understand the connection it has with the Lymphatic System.  I have developed this child-friendly explanation over the years on how the Immune System and Lymphatic System work together as well as the disease Lymphedema.

Having grown up with this disease since age 8 I have had to explain it to people many times.  Both during childhood and in adulthood I have Continue reading

Milroy Was Here – Milroy’s Disease

As I lay here awake at 4 AM suffering from another sleepless session of rest.  I thought I would share with you some information I’ve learned.  After 30 some years of having to explain Lymphedema in detail I’ve learned it has a more classy name.  Well, at least in the variant I deal with, It’s called Milroy’s Disease.  Which I have to admit Milroy’s Disease sounds much less miserable than Chronic Idiopathic Lymphedema.  

It has one of those pretty fancy ribbon colors too it’s a sky bluish turquoise kinda color.  Not that it makes things any better.  But hey, at least maybe it will get the attention it needs now.  Look at all the marketing, attention, and promotion that goes into Cancer, Autism, Etc.  This kind of awareness promotion has brought great changes to the fight of these ailments.  None of which should be set above the other, they all need dedicated attention.

I just think it is time for Lymphedema in all it’s forms to be recognized as a serious medical issue too.  Of all the systems and functions of the human body the Lymphatic System does not get the credit it deserves.

Photo Shoot at University of MD Upper Chesapeake Health

Hoffy and Kyle Relax at Photo Shoot

Kyle and Hoffy Hangin’ Loose relaxing before Photo Shoot. Photo by: Kyle Hofmeister

Hangin’ Loose at Photo Shoot

Location: University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health Bel Air Campus

Kyle and Hoffy are hanging loose relaxing before a photo shoot.  Hoffy will be featured in an article promoting the new Lymphedema Treatment Program.Continue reading

Lymphedema the Infection Reality

I won’t be sugar-coating or making things pleasant in this article.  I think it is very important that my readers understand the underbelly of Lymphedema.  If you feel you may be too sensitive to view actual photographs or hear the details that accompany them I do understand.

Infection of the tissues is a common issue with Lymphedema.  I am Continue reading

Fatigue Symptoms Related to Lymphedema

There is a great deal of debate among sufferers and professionals alike about fatigue.  The primary question being can Lymphedema be a trigger source for fatigue.  Well, I don’t know the official opinion on it but I sure know where I stand on the topic.

Being a person who has had Lymphedema now for Continue reading