December 2022

Hi <<First Name>>
Welcome to Issue #14 of Lipoedema Matters, a monthly newsletter created by Lipoedema Surgical Solution and Dr Chris Lekich

Image by Gloria Sanchez

Gloria Sánchez is a Spanish artist living in Prague, Czech Republic, who says she's on a mission to use her own Lipoedema journey to help, support and inspire other women.  Gloria blogs about her Lipoedema journey on her instagram page, and sells Lipoedema awareness art on her website.

Most of my life I knew something wasn’t right with my body.  Years and years of extreme diets and exercise, long periods of fasting, starvation, magic pills to lose fat, numerous cosmetic treatments…and nothing was working, in fact, my body was getting bigger and bigger.  I've unknowingly been fighting Lipoedema since I was 12 years old.

One of the first symptoms I experienced was the abnormal distribution and disproportion of fat in some areas of my body (first in legs, arms and later on abdomen) and the growth of them at a very fast speed regardless of how healthy my lifestyle was.  Seeing the different sizes of the fat nodules when squeezing the skin. Later I started to feel the heaviness in those areas, suffered pain when touched or after long periods of standing and walking, and the unexplained appearance of sudden bruises.  My maternal grandmother and sister have similar symptoms both in legs, arms and abdomen.

All of this led me to suffer with depression, stress and eating disorders… All of these with numerous consultations with doctors, constant joint pain, legs and arms that were extremely painful to be touched, massive bruises… and I was told that it was just bad genetics and I needed to do more exercise and diet!

One day I decided that If a Bikini Fitness competitor coached me with diet and exercise, I would achieve the same results as them. After one year preparing me, we really knew that something in my body was wrong, so I decided to research deeply and make an appointment with different doctors.  Allergy tests, endoscopy, colonoscopy, endocrine and lymphatic system tests, scans and blood tests all came back normal, but I knew that something was wrong.  When I couldn’t get any answer I started to research on the internet and I found a picture with different types of legs, a chronic disease called Lipoedema.  I immediately thought ‘Wow, that's me!’  I travelled to Germany in 2018 to see one of the specialists in that area. When I was diagnosed as stage 1-2, I cried with relief because finally there was an answer to what was wrong with me.

The main challenge for me was lack of information and understanding about the condition in the medicine field that led to my delayed diagnosis and poor support with self-management.  This affected my mental health as I couldn't comprehend what was happening to my body.  The physical pain was secondary as I used to think that all the symptoms I experienced were "normal".  The lack of energy, lethargy, extreme tiredness, heaviness, joint pain, not being able to do certain things like jump high or do deep squats… And the number of family plans or friends I've given up out of embarrassment or lack of self-confidence.

Art helped me a lot to process, relieve and let go of emotions. I think it's a kind of healing ritual where you portray and communicate your feelings in that specific moment.  I definitely believe art can help to emotionally navigate the journey of battling an illness and to process stagnant emotions in difficult times of our lives and can be very helpful in the process of a recovery.

I’ve had three surgeries so far; 1 on my upper legs, 1 on my lower legs and 1 on my upper arms/lower belly (the latter was before I knew I had Lipoedema).  Other conservative management treatments that I’ve undergone for Lipoedema and improved my overall health are: compression garments (arms and legs), dry brushing, pressure therapy, electro stimulation, vibration therapy, radio frequency, Epsom salt baths, cavitation, manual lymphatic massages, acupuncture, phytotherapy, pranic healing, swimming and strength training.  I try to reduce stress, increase my sunlight exposure, fast and enjoy a low carb/keto diet prioritising nutrient-dense anti inflammatory foods. I implement most of them in my everyday routine.  Thanks to the surgeries and the continued use of conservative treatments in my everyday routine, all of my Lipoedema symptoms have decreased significantly.  Now I love feeling the warmth of the sun on my skin and taking a deep breath to feel how the air fills my lungs. I love the silence that speaks for itself and I live in the present, without thinking too much about the past or the future.

My main tip for others who live with Lipoedema or any other chronic diseases is to not overthink or stress too much, take small steps in your health routine every day, accept and love yourself.  Think positive and be grateful for all the things that you have and are able to do, instead of the opposite.  By changing your narrative and how to speak to yourself today, will change your future for tomorrow.

Go to Gloria's Instagram

Amelia is an eighteen year old patient from New South Wales, who says she is lucky to have been diagnosed with Lipoedema so young, however, it was also very difficult for her.
Read Amelia's full case study here 

Our online Lipoedema Awareness events are now finished for 2022 we want to hear what type of online Awareness events would you like to see in 2023.
Whether it's Lipoedema-friendly nutrition or exercise, Conservative Management or mindfulness and mental health, we are committed to providing education and support to the Lipoedema community.
Let us know what you would like to see by emailing us or messaging us directly via Facebook or Instagram.
You can also rewatch any of this year's events on our

As part of Lipoedema Surgical Solution's ongoing dedication to providing education and awareness around Lipoedema to the medical and general communities, Dr Lekich attended an information evening during November hosted by The Oedema Institute in Melbourne.  The event had three speakers who included Dr Chris Lekich who presented about swollen legs, including venous disease, Lipoedema and Lymphoedema, the modalities to assess swollen legs and the management of swollen legs including conservative management & surgery.  Dr Matias Yudi - Interventional & Structural Cardiologist who presented on making sense of a hole in the heart and why a hole in the heart is significant.  Warwick Park – sonographer with training in transcranial ultrasound also presented on how the transcranial doppler test is used to detect a patent foramen ovale (PFO) or ‘hole in the heart’.  The event resulted in a lot of questions and discussions at the end.  You can view more photos from the event on our website.

During November we hosted a webinar on Compression for Lipoedema with Susan Butcher of The Oedema Institute.  The session covered the most effective time to utilise compression garments, medical grade compression versus non-medical compression, the pros and cons of circular knit or flat knit as well as the different classes of stockings available.  If you missed the live stream, you can view the recording on our website.

Dr Chris Lekich and the Lipoedema Surgical Solution Team would like to wish everyone in the Walk with Freedom Community a Merry Christmas and safe, happy and healthy New Year.  During this time our clinic will remain open from Monday 19th December until Thursday 22nd December from 9am until 4.30pm.  The clinic will be closed from Friday 23rd December and will reopen on Monday 9th January 2023, however, the Melbourne clinic will still be held on Saturday 7th January 2023.

Please help us raise awareness and education by sharing your Lipoedema journey, art, business or organisation here.
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Enjoy the healing power of baking.

I am respecting my body and doing what I can, with where I am now

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