Lipoedema — a fat disorder: Considerations for GPNs
Williams, Anne F.
MetadataShow full item record
Williams, A. (2018) Lipoedema — a fat disorder: Considerations for GPNs. Journal of General Practice Nursing, 4 (3), pp. 36-42.
Lipoedema is a fat and connective tissue disorder associated with proliferation of diet-resistant inflammatory fat tissue. It predominantly affects women and commonly manifests as symmetrical enlargement of the legs, buttocks and arms. Lipoedema often develops or worsens at key stages of life, such as puberty, pregnancy and menopause, and is associated with a variety of physical and psychosocial problems. It is poorly understood and women may be wrongly diagnosed as having lymphoedema or ‘obesity’, leading to a delay in accessing appropriate treatment and support. Lipoedema aetiology appears to include genetic, immune and endocrine factors, although the science is evolving and research is ongoing and, in the future, a clearer picture of lipoedema pathophysiology will emerge. This paper examines evidence relating to lipoedema pathophysiology, diagnosis, and the psychological impact of lipoedema, providing an overview of current treatment and selfmanagement approaches, and key considerations for general practice nurses (GPNs).