Elevating your feet may relieve swelling caused by edema in pelvic lymph nodes. Diet may be a factor. Salt encourages fluid retention. A high-salt diet, added to the extra burden of filtering cancer cells, may block the lymph nodes. Reducing salt intake or taking a diuretic may help. Sometimes wearing briefs instead of boxer shorts will be recommended to minimize edema. Wearing an athletic supporter may be suggested.
In serious cases, physical therapy may be used to induce drainage of the lymph fluid trapped in the legs. The legs, and possibly the scrotum, may be wrapped to discourage fluid retention.
Swollen lymph nodes, such as those in the neck, may be treated with radiation if the cancer is the cause of the swelling.
Like all treatments, scrotal or leg wraps may require visits to the doctor or from hospice staff. Family members may be required to learn new skills. Diet or clothing changes may be called for or you may need to set aside time each day to sit with your feet elevated.
Ask your doctor what you should do. Discuss changes with your family to minimize the impact on your quality of life.