Frequently Asked Questions
A: As of Spring 2003, the eligibility criteria for taking the exam are: 135 (60 minute) hours of CDT training consisting of 1/3 theoretical instruction in the anatomy and physiology of the lymphatics, and 2/3 significant hands on mentoring.
• Current, unrestricted licensure as an RN, OT, COTA, PT, PTA, MD, DO, ATC, DC or Massage Therapists who have completed 500 massage school hours and/or National Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork Certification.
• 192 hours college level human anatomy, physiology and/or pathology. (this requirement is automatically met with evidence of current professional licensure of: RN, OT, COTA, PT, PTA, MD, DO, ATC, and DC disciplines).
Q: How long after my training course may I take the exam?
A: LANA has removed the minimum of 1 year experience in direct patient care, utilizing hands-on CDT techniques is required, following the completion of the 135 hour course, to be eligible for the exam requirement. Candidates are now eligible to take the LANA exam immediate following verification of completion and passing of training course and once their LANA exam application has been reviewed and approved.
Q: Where can I find more information about the exam?
A: The Candidate Information Brochure (CIB) is an informational document created to provide comprehensive information about the exam and the exam application procedure. The CIB is available to be downloaded from the website free of charge. It is located on the left side of the home page of the website.
Q: What is the benefit to taking the LANA exam?
A: Passing a national certification exam will acknowledge the training you have had as being of a reputable standard and protect the investment you have already made in your career. It will identify lymphedema treatment as a specialty that requires advanced training and provide a basis from which insurance companies can establish more consistent reimbursement guidelines for Medicare and other US health insurance providers. In addition, credibility is gained through the North American medical establishment. The ultimate goal, of course, is to protect the consumer by assuring a high quality of care.
Q: Why is there a discrepancy between the qualification's accepted by LANA for the massage therapists trained in the United States and the massage therapists trained in Canada?
A: The interdisciplinary LANA Board of Directors established minimum educational and training standards for all applicants for certification to assure the high level of training that is required to care for the population of individuals we serve. Unlike many other educational programs, which are accredited by a specific national accrediting body in accordance with established standards, massage therapy training programs in the US have no agreed upon national standards. Thus, there is wide variation in curricula, institutional structure, credit hours and course content. Some massage programs are housed under the umbrella of a college while some are independently operated. Since science courses within massage therapy programs are not necessarily comparable between schools, it is not possible for LANA to assess the rigor of individual anatomy and physiology courses in massage therapy curricula. To maintain standardization, it has been the policy of the LANA Board for many years to require evidence of completion of formal academic coursework at the college level in the areas of anatomy and physiology. To qualify, such courses must be science courses available to any undergraduate student in the college, rather than courses restricted to massage therapy students. The Board of Directors of LANA encourages collegiality among all health professionals who have an interest in working with clients who have lymphedema, and recognizes the many ways that massage therapists can address the needs of these clients. The decision to require a specific level of anatomy and physiology credits for US massage therapists was made carefully and respectfully to protect our clients and the integrity of the certification process.
In Canada massage therapist training is generally much more extensive than in the US. The generally accepted standard in Canada is equivalent to a minimum of 2200 hours of training and is now competency-based in many Provinces. In British Columbia, Ontario and Newfoundland & Labrador, massage therapy is a regulated health profession governed by provincial laws. Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia all have a minimum 2200 hour or equivalent training but massage is not yet a government health-regulated profession. Quebec, Prince Edward Island, Northern Territories and Nunavut do not have provincial massage therapy training standards. Due to the high level of anatomy physiology and pathology training and examination massage therapists who have graduated from a 2200 training program or equivalent competency are exempt from the LANA science prerequisite.
Q: Which schools have been approved or are recognized as having adequate training?
A: LANA is not in a position to approve or accredit schools. LANA can only set standards. Identifying the schools that meet these standards is not a part of the national exam project. It will be the responsibility of each applicant to provide the application committee with the information needed to insure that the applicant meets the requirements; regardless of what school he or she attended.
Q:How much will it cost to take the exam?
A: Currently the test fee is $430.
Q:When and where is the exam given?
A: The exam is administered by Schroeder Measurement Technologies (SMT) throughout North America. Once your exam application has been approved, you can locate a testing site in your area and schedule to take the exam at a date and time that is convenient for you. As of 2014, the LANA exam is given on a rolling basis which means there are no exam cycles, you may take the exam at any point in time after completing and passing the training course and meeting the application requirements.
Q:Is there a hands-on (practical) component to the exam?
A: No. The LANA certification exam is a computer based testing tool designed to assure a basic standard of qualification for lymphedema therapists. LANA is concerned with testing the applicant's proficiency over the body of knowledge that exists in the current literature.
Q:If I do not pass the exam, how soon am I eligible to re-take the test?
A: Any candidate who fails to achieve a passing score on the exam may apply to retake the exam after six (6) months. The candidate must reapply to SMT and must pay the current exam application fee again. You may sit for the exam up to 3 times in a 24-month period to achieve a passing score. If you do not successfully pass at this point, LANA strongly recommends that you complete additional CDT training.
Q:If I am already a CLT-LANA therapist do I ever need to re-certify?
A: YES! LANA certification expires six (6) years after successful completion of the exam. Candidates will re-certify by taking the exam again and/or providing proof of completed contact hours. The application for recertification is located on the website's home page on the left hand side.
A: LANA is not a referral service, nor are they in a position to make recommendations. LANA's goal is to provide a means by which qualified lymphedema therapists interested in taking a national examination can obtain board certification from the Lymphology Association of North America.
Q:Can LANA offer any scholarship assistance for lymphedema training programs or for the exam?
A: At the present time, LANA is not able to provide scholarship assistance to students enrolling in lymphedema training courses, nor is it not their role to endorse or approve individual training schools. The National Lymphedema Network (NLN: www.lymphnet.org) has a Resource Guide that lists training schools. You can contact them directly to compare curricula and aid you in selecting the most appropriate school. As a non-profit organization, LANA does not offer scholarships for the exam. However, LANA does provide a limited amount of discounted certificates to the training programs to help offset the price of the exam.