– Excess weight on your legs
– Heaviness and discomfort in the legs
– Your upper body and lower body are completely different sizes making clothes shopping very difficult
– You have a small waist, but large hips and thighs
– Your excess weight does not include your feet or hands
– You can lose weight from your upper body but not your lower
– Your lower body bruises easily
– Some members of your family are or were a similar shape
Lipoedema is is a condition that makes you accumulate fat below the waist, often resulting in your hips, buttocks and legs being out of proportion with your upper body. It can also affect your arms. This condition usually affects women, but in some cases, it can appear in men.
78% of lipoedema sufferers questioned in a 2014 survey stated that they developed symptoms between the ages of 18-25 but only 7% received a diagnosis at that time. Many people take decades to realise that they have lipoedema and are constantly dismissed by the medical profession over the years and told that the excess fat ‘is their own fault’. It is believed that more than 15% of the female population may suffer from lipoedema.
There is currently no known cause for lipoedema. It is thought that it is genetic, and in some cases, there will be a family history of the condition. It is not caused by obesity, as it is a condition that can appear in people who are of a healthy weight. Dieting will often make little difference to lipoedema. It generally starts during adolescence, pregnancy or menopause, which suggests hormones may be a cause.
Lipoedema is not to be confused with lymphoedema. This is swelling of the skin caused by fluids that are built-up in the lymphatic system. Swollen skin caused by lymphoedema will indent when pressed; this will not happen if it is caused by lipoedema.
Whilst no known cure for the condition currently exists, in 2008 the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recognised liposuction as an appropriate method for managing and alleviating the symptoms.
Liposuction performed using specially designed cannulas are employed to treat lipoedema. Centre for Surgery is one the leading UK centres for the treatment of lipoedema using the lipomatic technique. The lipomatic technique employs the use of infrasonic vibration to break up and remove the fat whilst respecting the lymphatic system – this is of key importance in the treatment of lipoedema.
Liposuction for lipoedema treatment is not currently available on the NHS.
Lipomatic is a minimally-invasive long-term solution to chronic lipoedema which has not responded to non-surgical treatments such as diet and exercise.
Lipomatic is performed under a local anaesthetic, so you will feel minimal pain and discomfort throughout the procedure. This will also mean you will be able to leave the same day, you will not have to spend the night in the hospital.
The aftercare is of vital importance in achieving optimal outcomes following lipoedema surgery. Centre for Surgery employs both expertly applied compression garment application and manual lymphatic drainage therapy for optimum results.Wearing compression garments will help you prevent any future complications, such as developing lymphoedema.
Because there are tiny incisions, these will heal very quickly, and there is minimal risk of scarring, as no sutures are required. You will also experience minimal bruising and swelling, due to the low risk of bleeding complications. As such, you will be able to return to your normal daily activities three days after the procedure.
Are you interested in treating your lipoedema? Contact Centre for Surgery today to discuss your options, get more information, or book a consultation.