Lipedema (also known as “inflammation syndrome”) is a chronic disease that mostly affects women.
It is characterized by an excessive accumulation of fatty tissue in the area of the hips.
Unlike the classic cellulite or “cartridge”, you can even reach the calf and ankle area and suffer intense pain .
Who suffers it feels the impact of the aesthetic problem and all the psychological implication that this entails, since, almost without knowing how and suddenly, he sees how the volume increases his hips and legs until his mobility is limited.
The lipedema is not so common in men, but in the few known cases a very striking inflammation is experienced in the facial area.
It should also be noted that it is not a simple problem of obesity: in this case the diet or the patient’s life habits have nothing to do with this excessive accumulation of fat.
We are facing a disease of genetic origin that, in addition, generates physical suffering.
Today in our space we want to talk about it to give visibility also to all the people who suffer it.
Life with lipedema, a challenge to face daily
Sara is 29 years old and her life was normal until she gave birth. After delivery and while raising her baby, she began to follow a rigorous diet to lose the excess weight she had gained during pregnancy.
However, as the months passed, his body began to experience something unusual.
- He lost weight at the waist, torso and arms, regained his original figure. However, his hips and legs did not stop accumulating fat and more fat .
- After a year and a half she could barely walk and was forced to go in a wheelchair.
The doctors did not take long to give him a diagnosis: lipedema. A disease Sara had never heard of.
His life has taken a turn and a 180 degree turn.
What until recently had been his day to day as a receptionist and as a young girl who faced with hope the adventure of being a mother changed completely.
Treatment options are limited and the only therapeutic approaches offered are compression garments and gentle exercise.
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Also, another alternative that can be used is liposuction. However, it lacks the financial means to do so.
In addition, doctors tell you that soon after the lipedema will make an appearance again : your legs will gain weight again.
Sara is aware that she will need help to take care of her baby and that, possibly, she will have to look for another job.
Her mirror now reflects the image of another woman whom she will have to accept and help.
What causes lipedema?
Curiously enough, there are not many clear and objective studies on what causes lipedema and that excessive accumulation of fat in the legs, arms or face in the case of men.
It is suspected that there is a genetic cause, and that they can influence metabolic, inflammatory and, above all, hormonal factors .
What symptoms does it present?
This abnormal accumulation of fat can start at puberty, after pregnancy or even at menopause .
The first thing these patients notice is the following:
- Pain in the soft tissues at rest, when walking or when touching them.
- Sudden accumulation of lipedemic fat, from the waist to the knees or ankles.
- The feet are not affected.
- The fat accumulates in nodules or pads that put pressure on the joints , to the point of not being able to walk normally.
- The skin loses its elasticity.
- Edema and bruises appear.
After a few months after experiencing this first stage, the person will notice the following:
- Sensation of constant cold.
- The skin acquires a texture similar to rubber.
- Chronic pain and progressive deterioration of mobility. Two factors that, added to the problems of body image, generate feelings of depression, anger and sadness to the point of developing a depression.
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Is there treatment for lipedema?
As we pointed out at the beginning, lipedema has nothing to do with poor diet or unhealthy lifestyle habits.
para las personas que la padecen. We are facing a chronic, limiting and debilitating illness for people who suffer from it. Hence, the therapeutic approach must be very broad and individualized for each person, without excluding, of course, the psychological field.
Diets and fasting cures do not solve the problem of lipedema. There is also no specific pharmacological treatment that can resolve this excessive tendency to accumulate fat.
The most common treatments that are usually used are the following:
- Containment garments in order to “drain” and eliminate fat.
- Massage focused on manual lymphatic drainage.
- Shock waves.
It should be noted, in addition, that liposuction does not always help. It is not the solution, and in many cases it can be very negative for many people, because fat will reappear over time.
Many patients are seeing great results with swimming . Ultimately, this is about finding the strategy that works best for each patient.
Where to approach each approach with optimism, assuming that change, that disease for which there is currently no effective solution.