Innovative bra to reduce breast edema for woman that survived breast cancer

About one in five women who survived breast cancer develop lymphedema after mastectomy or breast-conserving surgery. Edema is a painful accumulation of fluid, which can occur in the breasts. There are various treatments for edema, but they are painful, long-lasting, intensive, expensive, and mainly target the arms and legs, not the breast. Special compression bras or inlay pads that are available on the market, do not work well enough or are so bulky that daily wearing is practically impossible. How can the optimal textile material against breast edema be developed, that can be produced into a bra? And how can it be proven that the product works?

Within the project we are working on the development of an innovative textile material, to produce bras. Also, manufacturability and production costs need to be taken into account as well as sustainability. Finally, the effect of the textile material needs to be measured to research whether the bras are reducing the edema or not. For this complex assignment we are seeking textile experts, nurses and health technologists. Textile experts are wanted in this project for their material knowledge and practical skills to develop innovative fabrics/textile structure. Nurses and health technologists are needed from the health perspective. Their knowledge about lymphedema, medical aids, and therapies are important as well as their skills to research whether a developed product improves the patient’s life.

Are you interested in the development of an innovative textile material, that reduces breast edema for women that survived breast cancer? Then join this project at the research group. Together with two companies we dive into the development of a textile material and a test-plan to measure how well the developed material (eventually the bra) works. This is a very interesting project that could have an enormous impact on the lives of many women who survived breast cancer but struggle with edema daily.

This project contributes to the following Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):