By: Cynthia “MsCJay” Judge, Las Vegas, NV
The Lymphedema Mavens podcast is the brainchild of my co-host Coach Christine Wunderlin. Christine and I were patients at the Lymphatic Center of Las Vegas. Although we had never met personally, our paths crossed while filming a commercial for the center. Shortly thereafter, Christine asked if I would be interested in co-hosting a radio podcast with her, and of course I agreed. Little did I realize how much my life would change on September 15, 2011, the day of our first podcast.
As breast cancer survivors with lymphedema, Christine and I wanted to help get the word out about this condition. We were appalled that few physicians knew little if anything about lymphedema. Although, Christine facilitated a support group, we felt that the podcast would help those who would benefit from listening in the comfort of their homes.
We decided to call ourselves the Lymphedema Mavens, and dedicate our show to taking our listeners on a journey of understanding, healing, recovery and restoration. We wanted to give our listeners a forum to share their personal stories of living with lymphedema. And, as time and the show progressed we invited experts in the field to be featured guests, to share medical information, and strategies to living a fuller more enjoyable life.
We both support the Lymphedema Treatment Act; the show has been a source for updates on the advocacy efforts in progress to change the laws regarding treatments. We’ve had Heather Ferguson on the show several times. On October 19, 2011 the Lymphedema Mavens were given a Proclamation by Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman and the Las Vegas City Council deeming October 19, 2011 as Lymphedema Awareness Day and giving their full endorsement of the Lymphedema
Diagnosis and Treatment Act.
I developed lymphedema in 1980, one year after my first modified radical mastectomy. My lymphedema went untreated until November 2009. Living with untreated lymphedema affected my self-esteem and overall health. As it is with most lymphedema patients, I suffered in silence, until a bout of cellulitis and a case of rigors sent my health spiraling. I ultimately found treatment and it was a life-changing event for me, I discovered my true calling. I became an outspoken advocate for lymphedema patients.
Being the co-host of the Lymphedema Mavens podcast is a dream come true for me, I found my passion. I have always wanted to be in broadcasting, but felt that it was something out of my realm. I must admit that I enjoy booking ours guest and conducting the interviews. There is much research involved in the production of a quality podcast. The production of the podcast is a labor of love.
The Mavens have been privileged to cover a number of important topics on the subject of lymphedema, breast cancer, and healthcare. We are eternally grateful to those who took the time out of their busy schedules to contribute to our podcast. Although there are many to thank, here are just a few:
Dr. David Ansell, Pioneer of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act.
Dr. Nancy Cappello from Are You Dense.org discussing breast density and legislation.
Deborah Cordner Carson, Keynote speaker at the 10th Int’l NLN Conference.
Dr. Elain Schattner, Huffington Post Columnist discussing “Can You Be A Patient Advocate?”
Saskia Thiadens, Executive Director National Lymphedema Network updates from the 10th Int’l NLN Conference.
Jane Dweck, StepUp-SpeakOut
sharing resources for the lymphdema community
Linda Anne Kahn on the subject of Integrative Approaches to Lymphedema Management
Michael Altriste, on the subject of Delivering Lymphedema Care to the Homebound Patient
Dr. Paula Stewart speaking about her book 100 Questions and Answers about Lymphedema and the importance of eating anti-inflammatory foods.
Dr. Jay Granzow on the subject of Lymphatic Liposuction as a Lymphedema Treatment for Long-Term Non-Pitting Lymphedema.
The Lymphedema Mavens Podcast is fully funded by the hosts; we look forward to the day when we have a sponsor who will help with the cost of production. In the meantime, we will continue to all that we can to bring all things lymphedema to our audience.
I am blessed to be doing something that brings so much joy into my life.