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Didi is an athlete and had always dreamed of becoming a model ever since she was a child. But when lymphoedema developed in her left leg at the age of 12, she felt like it could be an obstacle in pursuing her dreams. However, Didi refused to let it hold her down and pushed herself to achieve more than she thought possible. Read her story below.*
*This is a personal report of the patient and does not necessarily reflect the knowledge of JOBST or the current state of science. Always seek advice from a Healthcare Professional if you experience any symptoms.
“It's really hard to describe the pain in my leg, because it's not a normal pain. It's really weird. It's not like a stabbing pain, sometimes it's normal achiness, but the worst for me is a throbbing sort of pain as if all of a sudden I just need to stop. (…) It's like when you are at the end of a race and you are at that last bit and you're trying to push, push, push and your legs feel like they can't push anymore, because there's this sensation that comes up in your legs that kind of just forces you to slow down. That's how I describe it. But 10 times over.”
“I feel very exhausted all the time because I feel like I'm putting extra energy into everything I do. I do athletics, so what I'm putting into my left leg is double the amount of energy and effort that I'm putting into my right. It's very hard to keep up with everybody. I also get pain throughout my leg, which kind of varies from a numbness or achiness to a throbbing sort of pain. And it's quite hard for me to sleep. It's hard for me to sometimes stay still. It's just quite uncomfortable to be dealing with 24/7 because there's always something that I'm feeling in my leg.”
“When I hit 16, 17, I just stopped wearing compression because I thought, oh, nothing's helping. (…) But I started caring about my health again. (…) So I aim to wear them every day as much as I can. And I have a nighttime compression I wear as well. And when I have time I put my [adjustable compression] wrap on as well. So three different types of compression that I use daily, at least one of them daily, to try and make sure that I'm promoting that lymph fluid to move up.”
“I didn't really have a lot of love for my leg. I would kind of detach it from me. I would sort of think that's not part of me. (…) But now I've come to the realisation that obviously this is a part of me, this is part of who I am and I need to love it as much as I do everything else. And if anyone tries to say otherwise, then look that's their problem.”