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How to know if I have lipedema?
Diagnosis must be made by an expert in lipedema.An adequate anamnesis of the patient is required: antecedents, evolution, symptoms, etc.and a detailed physical examination to determine if the patient has lipedema, clasiffy it in the correct grade and decide if she can benefit from a surgical treatment or can be managed with conservative treatment.
The main characteristics of lipedema are:
Inheritance: you can have relatives with a situation similar to yours, even on the paternal side.
Evolution: change in shape of legs begins with puberty or increases with some hormonal change (pregnancy, menopause, contraceptive pill, etc.)
Spontaneous pain: You feel pain in arms or legs even when at rest. This pain can increase with exercise and make it impossible to practice.
Tenderness/pain to palpation: You feel pain when someone leans on your legs or grabs your arm. You seem to be much more sensitive than other people.
Feeling of heaviness or swollen legs: you may feel heaviness and pressure in your legs that doesn´t respond much to measures such as raising your legs.
Characteristic distribution: you present a clear disproportion between legs or arms (with clearly much more fat volume) and torso.
Hands and feet without affectation: unlike the rest of the limb, in feet and hands there is no accumulation of fat.
Tendency to bruises: you frequently ″finds″ bruises in legs without knowing their origin or they appear after small traumatisms.
Hard consistency and nodularity of fatty tissue: your fat in legs or arms has a harder consistency than abdominal fat and, occasionally, it presents nodularity.
No response to diet: with different diets you lose volume in face, torso and chest, with minimal loss in legs or arms.
No response to physical exercise: with different types of exercise, although this is constant and intense, the volume loss is minimal in legs or arms.
Difficulty in diagnosis and frustration: you have often been misdiagnosed and you consulted several doctors. ″It is genetic″, ″its tired legs″, ″it is due to bad circulation″, ″it is obesity and there haven´t been a good follow-up of the diet″, are diagnoses usually received. After years of evolution of this disease you can feel very frustrated and misunderstood.
If you have at least six of these characteristics, it is advisable to request an assessment by a lipedema specialist to evaluate your case and propose the most appropriate treatment.
In case of diagnosis of lipedema and if surgical intervention with WAL liposuction is necessary to treat it, it is essential to perform a full-legs Doppler Ultrasound to rule out the presence of relevant varicose veins.If present, they should be treated by a vascular surgeon before WAL liposuction procedure.
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