What is Lipedema?

Lipedema is a condition that causes excess fat to accumulate under the skin either in the lower or upper part of the body.

Said so, it is a condition that affects mainly women.

in fact it manifests itself just after hormonal changes, such as puberty, post pregnancy or in older age, after even major surgery.

The condition does not affect the hands or feet.

Regarding the symptoms and presentation, Lipedema can be mistaken for lymphedema.

Even though those are different conditions, lipedema can lead to lymphedema.

What is the cause of Lipedema?


Well, is not really known what can cause lipedema.

As already mentioned above, it does manifest itself often when there is hormonal change, so hormones can play a role in it.

What is known, indeed, is that runs in families, so have a genetic component, and most of the time affects women.

Obesity, is not a cause either, even though most of the people who suffer from Lipedema suffer from obesity too.

Symptoms are like:

  • A fat build-up in the thighs, buttocks, calves, and occasionally in the upper arms.
  • Feet, or hands unless the patient has chronic venous insufficiency or lymphedema do not swell.
  • Pain.
  • Walking ability can decrease as the condition worsen.
  • Condition of Anxiety and or Depression can develop as the person feel an imbalance about their body appearance.
  • If the lipedema is not looked after, the accumulation of fat under the skin can block the Lymphatic System, causing Secondary Lymphodema or lipo-Lymphedema.

What can be done if you suffer from Lipedema?

There are several approaches to the problem, depending on the severity of the case.

Earlier the lipedema gets diagnosed, the better. For diagnosing Lipedema you may wanna talk to your GP or visit a therapist from the Vodder academy who has a certification of LEVEL III.

Here is where you can find a practitioner who can help you with that: link.

In regards to massage, there is not much that Remedial Massage, Myotherapy or Thai Massage can do.

Specify diet can help too, and you may wanna talk to your GP about it.

Lipedema Bandaging

Also, surgery such as liposuction would help, even though those are better at the early stage.

In specific, a manual therapy like MLD (Manual Lymphatic Drainage) can obviously help.

But MLD itself is not enough in most cases, especially if the Lipedema did end up creating a Lipo-Lymphodemia.

Indeed, in addition to MLD compress bandaging and compress garments wear are essentials.

Those 2 practices can allow the work initiated from an MLD therapy to be maintained and amplified.



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