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Lipedema: what it is and what treatments exist

Responds Dr. Jesús Olivas-Menayo, plastic surgeon at FEMM Clinic and head of the clinic’s lipedema unit.

What does it consist of?

Lipedema is a disease of fatty tissue that mainly affects the lower extremities and the hips causing a disproportion in these body areas without affecting the feet.

How long does it take to notice the effects after the operation?

By addressing the disease through surgical treatment, the patient will be able to notice the results almost immediately. because the amount of fat decreases and your quality of life improves considerably. At first the patient will suffer edema and inflammation, but after a few weeks the area will recover.

If the lipedema is in an advanced stage, it is very possible that more operations will need to be performed six months after the first, to remove the rest of the diseased fat until the affected area is completely healthy.

If the lipedema is not very advanced There is a conservative treatment that reduces the volume of fat. It consists of aesthetic medicine sessions accompanied by physiotherapy treatment and a sports plan to slow down its progress. In this case, its effects on the body depend on the number of sessions performed on each patient, according to her personal case.

What kind of anesthesia is used? What is the postoperative period like?

During specific liposuction for lipedema, general anesthesia is usually used, but it is a matter for the surgical team. I recommend patients to ask, since the operation may be performed with local anesthesia and sedation.

What is the average age of the people who demand this treatment?

The average age usually varies quite a bit, although it is true that there are currently a larger number of patients thanks to the visibility of lipedema today.

Do you know any celebrity Who has had surgery for lipedema or who regularly undergoes lymphatic drainage?

Although there are many celebrities who have made this condition visible, it is difficult to determine the treatment they have chosen since this varies according to each personal case.

What are the risks of this intervention?

Although it is not common, it is possible that in very extreme cases the patient suffers abnormalities in the silhouettefluid accumulation, numbness and infections.

Is this operation usually done alone or is there a standard kit in which several interventions are performed at the same time?

Liposuction focused on lipedema usually done individually, then accompanied by a sports plan and physiotherapy sessions. It is very important that patients modify their lifestyle habits to slow the progress of this disease.

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