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How Do I Know if I Have Lipedema?

If you’re asking, “how do I know if I have lipedema,” there’s a good chance that you’re experiencing some symptoms. Abnormal fat distribution, primarily in the lower body, causes lipedema. If you have lipedema, you’ll probably notice that your lower body is larger than your upper body. You will probably have a disproportionate appearance. You may also experience pain, sensitivity, and bruising of the legs. Lipedema is a poorly understood condition, even amongst medical professionals. Therefore, you should seek a specialist diagnosis to get early treatment.

Symptoms of Lipedema

If you’re concerned that you may have lipedema, there are a number of symptoms to look out for. Here are a few of the most common:

  • Symmetrical, column-like legs.
  • Difficulty buying clothes as the top half of the body can be several sizes smaller than the lower body.
  • Pain or sensitivity in the legs when touched.
  • Easy bruising in the affected areas.
  • The feet remain unaffected.
  • Sometimes the arms are affected, but the hands remain unaffected.
  • Soft, cool skin.
  • A nodule-like texture to the skin.

You may have some or all of these symptoms. Depending on which stage of the disease you are at, the symptoms may vary in severity.

Lipedema is a progressive condition. The symptoms may appear quite gradually. They may take a long time to worsen. At first, many people mistake the signs of lipedema for other conditions like obesity. As a result, it can be difficult to get a diagnosis at stage one or two of the disease.

Nevertheless, if you spot these symptoms in yourself, you should seek specialist medical advice. A lipedema specialist will have the necessary expertise to give you a professional diagnosis. The earlier you receive a diagnosis, the earlier you can receive treatment. Early treatment produces better outcomes overall, so acting quickly as soon as you spot these symptoms is imperative.

Family Links

Medical professionals are still unsure as to the causes of lipedema. They believe it has a connection with female hormones. The reason for this belief is that the symptoms often appear at times of female hormonal fluctuation. Many women first experience symptoms or discover their symptoms worsen around puberty, pregnancy, and menopause. However, there may be a genetic link.

Experts have noticed that lipedema tends to run in families. So, if other family members have lipedema, you may have it too. It could be lipedema if you’re experiencing similar symptoms to your mother, grandmother, or sisters.

Worsening Symptoms

As we have already pointed out, lipedema is a progressive condition. It will only worsen over time if you don’t get effective treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms that are getting worse as the years go on, it could be lipedema.

Unable To Lose Weight 

Many doctors tell women with lipedema that they are obese. However, if diet and exercise aren’t helping you to slim down, you could have lipedema. If you are obese, adhering to a healthy eating plan and working out regularly will help. Even if you tend to accumulate more fat in a specific area, you should see overall slimming after a while. That won’t happen if you have lipedema. The areas affected by the condition won’t reduce in size at all even if you lose a lot of weight. Lipedema is more concentrated on the lower body. If your upper body gets smaller, but your legs stay large after dieting and exercising, you could have lipedema.

There is a misconception that all women with lipedema are obese. That isn’t true. Many lipedema sufferers are overweight due to the challenges of exercising when suffering from this condition. Nevertheless, women of all sizes can suffer from this condition. Even women with eating disorders can have lipedema. Their legs will stay larger than their upper body. No matter how little they eat or how often they exercise, the diseased fat will not go away.

Other Conditions That Are Similar To Lipedema

There are other conditions that have similar symptoms to lipedema. These include:

Obesity: Usually, obese people will be large all over their bodies. They may have extra fat in one area, but diet and exercise will ensure weight loss over the whole body.

Lymphedema: Lymphedema is due to fluid build-up in the legs or arms, not diseased fat. People with lymphedema rarely have symmetrical swelling. Some people with lipedema go on to develop lymphedema at a later stage.

Sometimes, swollen legs are due to other causes. Pregnancy, consuming a diet that is too high in sodium, or heart or kidney problems could cause swelling.

Other causes of swelling in the legs – pregnancy/high sodium diet/medical problems

What Do I Do If I Have Lipedema?

If you believe you have lipedema, you must see a specialist and get a diagnosis. There are conservative treatments available, but surgical treatments are the best option. Liposuction for lipedema is the most effective option. It permanently removes the diseased fat, restoring a more proportionate body shape and reducing pain and mobility problems.

ArtLipo should be your first choice for lipedema treatment. As specialists in the field, we can offer lipedema liposuction to help improve your symptoms.

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