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Lipoedema Self Help

There's currently no cure, but there are things that can help and stop it getting worse.

Diagnosis is the first crucial step. 

Skin management and maintenance.  Protect and monitor skin condition, ensuring careful washing and drying to minimise infection.  Regular use of emollient moisturiser to stop skin drying out.

Try to maintain a healthy weight by eating healthily, keeping active, and doing more exercise. Exercise also helps the lymphatic system to work more efficiently.  Work within your limits and increase gradually.

Wear compression garments, wraps or bandages to reduce pain and discomfort, make it easier to walk and redefine the limb appearance. The garment helps to support the tissues and helps the lymphatic system to work more effectively.  Finding the right garments and prescribing should be undertaken with support from a trained specialist.

Manual Lymphatic Drainage

The use of massage techniques to ease and soothe symptoms of lipoedema and move fluid through the lymphatic system and to encourage a more effective and efficient flow. This should be carried out by a specialist MLD therapist.

Counselling or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) if you're finding it difficult to cope with your symptoms and you feel depressed and alone.  Lipoedema can be a very frustrating condition.

Liposuction may be appropriate to help reduce the limb volume and consequently the pain and discomfort.  Each individual case is different, and possibilities should be explored with a lipoedema specialist surgeon. It is not readily available on the NHS.  Evidence gathering and review is currently underway as part of NICE guidelines.


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