Heather Evans

Heather Evans is a lymphedema specialist and chiropractor in Dallas, Texas at The Health Collective.
The following was submitted by Heather Evans (@bodyworkrx):
What has your experience been with lymphedema?

I’m a certified lymphedema therapist. I was first trained in 1997, then attended the Foldi Clinic advanced class in 2008. I worked full time as a lymph therapist in and outpatient and inpatient hospital from 1997-2002, when I started my own private business called Bodywork RX Inc. I still spend 80% of my day treating lymphedema and lymphatic conditions and the other 20% I’m a chiropractor working with musculoskeletal alignment.

How does lymphedema impact your everyday life/routine? How does it impact your career or activities?

It is my career. I spend every day thinking about it and talking about it.

How do you feel you fit in with the lymphedema community?

Professional and advocate. My main focus is teaching people the anatomy of the lymphatic system and how it works, so that they can better understand the “why” behind the treatments and the things that influence swelling.

My main focus is teaching people the anatomy of the lymphatic system and how it works, so that they can better understand the ‘why’ behind the treatments and the things that influence swelling.

– Heather Evans
What has your experience been with the health care system?

It’s better than nothing, but it’s not enough. Many people cannot find a lymphedema therapist near them at a hospital or outpatient clinic. When they do their insurance doesn’t cover enough treatments.

What would you like to see for lymphedema within the next few years?

Unfortunately, I don’t know that there will truly ever be a cure because the reasons that people develop lymphedema vary so widely. However, It would be wonderful if some of the more prevalent reasons could be fixed. I think that the BIGGEST improvement would be to change the way lymphedema is classified within the health insurance payment system.

I think that the BIGGEST improvement would be to change the way lymphedema is classified within the health insurance payment system.

– Heather Evans

Right now, when a person goes to therapy for lymphedema treatment that payment structure only pays for volume (circumferential) reduction of the limb. Once that reduction has reached a plateau, the therapy visits end. There is not payment for maintenance. If lymphedema could be classified more like diabetes so that health insurance would pay 1. To get it under control then 2. Keep it under control. This would mean paying for regular MLD and compression garments.

Are you involved with the lymphedema community (in terms of fundraising, volunteering, attending events, etc.)?

Yes, I have done work with the lobby days for the Lymphedema Treatment Act

How do you feel about the lymphedema community? What are its areas of strength? Are there any areas that need improvement?

The lymphedema community has come a long way. I remember the days before Facebook groups and blogs, where people only had a small circle of others to talk to and relate with.

The lymphedema community has come a long way. I remember the days before Facebook groups and blogs, where people only had a small circle of others to talk to and relate with.

– Heather Evans
What needs are underserved in the lymphedema community? What kind of people do you feel are underrepresented or under appreciated? Have you personally ever felt misunderstood or isolated within the community?

I think the minority outreach could be better. I would also like to see more functional medicine physicians take an interest in lymphedema and lipedema because there is so much that is diet and supplement based that could be helpful, but patients physicians just don’t get an education about that.

I would also like to see more functional medicine physicians take an interest in lymphedema and lipedema because there is so much that is diet and supplement based that could be helpful, but patients physicians just don’t get an education about that.

– Heather Evans

I would like to see a “Lymphedema Doctor” or “lymphologist” be a specialty like Cardiology and dermatology are choices in Medical Schools.

Instagram: @bodyworkrx
Website: bodyworkrx.net

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *