The Study

We recently partnered with ImpediMed to perform a meta-analysis of 50 peer-reviewed studies investigating the occurrence or progression of chronic breast cancer-related lymphedema (BCRL) in over 67,000 female breast cancer patients. The meta-analysis confirmed that early intervention based on the detection of subclinical lymphedema by ImpediMed’s SOZO bioimpedance spectrometry (BIS) device resulted in significantly improved outcomes when compared to traditional circumference monitoring and background rates in patients with chronic BCRL.

Peer-reviewed studies from PubMed, CINHAL, and Google Scholar conducted in North America, Europe, and Oceania were included in the meta-analysis. A random-effects model was used to calculate a pooled annualized estimate of BCRL incidence while accounting for clinical and methodological heterogeneity. Subgroup analyses examined differences in duration of follow-up as well as breast and axillary surgery.

The Findings

Our meta-analysis demonstrated that early detection of lymphedema using ImpediMed’s SOZO BIS device, in combination with early intervention, resulted in an 81% reduction in the rate of chronic BCRL when compared to circumference monitoring and a 69% reduction when compared to background monitoring.

ImpediMed’s SOZO non-invasive (BIS) device, which replaces L-Dex U400 (discontinued in 2018), monitors fluid and tissue status within patients’ bodies. Routine monitoring allows providers to proactively assess and treat changes in fluids that may increase a patient’s risk of chronic lymphedema. Early intervention based on BIS results enables providers to prevent disease progression.

How & Why a Meta-Analysis Proved Value

Sifting through large, complex bodies of evidence is a cumbersome task that requires expertise and attention to even the smallest of details. Knowing which studies to include in your meta-analysis can be an intimidating and complicated feat. The TTi research team defined inclusion and exclusion criteria, conducted a systematic literature review (following PRISMA guidelines) to identify eligible studies to analyze, and applied the most relevant outcome statistics across a range of population subgroups.

The meta-analysis enabled us to confirm the value and far-reaching effects of SOZO in combination with intervention to reduce the incidence of chronic BCRL.