What is a lipedema?

A lipedema is a genetic, usually progressive proliferation and dysfunction of the fat tissue. A vast majority of the individuals affected by this excessive accumulation of fat cells are women between 20 and 40.


An increased occurrence of typical symptoms can give an important clue to the disease:

  • Feeling of heaviness in the legs
  • Swelling of legs during long periods of standing or sitting
  • Noticeable sensitivity to pressure and touch
  • Tendency to develop bruises
  • Orange peel skin / cellulitis
  • Hardenings (knots) in the subcutaneous tissue with painful sensitivity to touch

Lipedema or normal overweight?

Only women are affected by lipedema. The disease is characterized by a disproportion between a slender upper body and very large legs. Persons affected usually have to wear trousers that are often two or more sizes larger than their tops. A typical characteristic is that the hands and feet of people suffering from lipedema remain unaffected by the proliferation of fat cells. These characteristics do not occur with normal obesity (adiposity) or purely aesthetically bothersome body shapes, such as the so-called saddle bags.


The areas mainly affected are upper or lower thighs and upper or lower arms.


Lipedema is classified into five degrees of severity:

  • Type I: proliferation of fat tissue in the area of buttocks and hips (saddle bag phenomenon)
  • Type II: The lipedema extends to the knees, formation of folds of fat around the inner side of the knee
  • Type III: The lipedema extends from the hips to the ankles
  • Type IV: Arms & legs up to the wrists / ankles are affected, only feet and hands remain unaffected
  • Type V: Lipolymphedema with increased water retention in the back of hands and feet as well as in the fingers and toes



We would be happy to describe the treatment to you in detail during a private consultation and look forward to welcoming you to our clinic.