Stage 0 Lymphedema
Lymphedema can develop very slowly—with some of the early changes happening within the tissues without obvious noticeable swelling or symptoms. Protein molecules can accumulate beneath the skin and “pull” extra water into the affected area, occasionally resulting in sensations of heaviness or fatigue in the limb or region. Despite a “normal” measurement of tissue or limb sizes in that area, the early changes leading to lymphedema have begun and generally respond to treatment. This stage should not be ignored—instead, prompt treatment will reduce the risk of worsening edema.