Lymphedema can occur primarily (primary lymphedema) or as a secondary manifestation of a previous illness (secondary lymphedema). Secondary lymphedemas often have an underlying congenital component that becomes clinically evident only after a triggering event. Primary lymphedemas, categorized as neonatal or congenital (Milroy’s disease), early onset (Meige’s syndrome), or late onset, have a varied etiology based on lymphangiectasia of varying severity. Secondary lymphedemas most commonly have a surgical cause, such as in the case of oncological lymphadenectomy (post-mastectomy lymphedema). However, they can also result from traumatic events, infections (filariasis-related or post-lymphangitic lymphedemas), or be associated with a loss of neuro-muscular function (disuse lymphedema). 

ETIOLOGY OF LYMPHEDEMA:

In the image: Secondary lymphedema due to trauma with corresponding lymphoscintigraphy, which, when overlapped, shows tracer stagnation at the scar site and corresponding lymph stasis in the medial thigh region. 

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