Liposuction: I type this from my hospital bed, having... - LSN

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I type this from my hospital bed, having had 3.3 litres of fat removed from my leg, and my leg looks nearly normal.

l am amazed at how much of my leg's bulk was done to the fat that associates itself with the lymphoedema, and although I m not and never have been vain, I'm certain I can get trousers on again.

I went into hospital on the evening of 15th October for surgery on the morning of the 17th. In between times I had sole use of a Lymphapress machine which I used as many times as I could (11 x 1hr sessions). Possibly shifted 4 litres of lymph.

Please do not be fooled that this liposuction is anything like the cosmetic ones you see on TV, apparently it's more intense.

They drain, as a guide, 1 litre per hour, so this was fairly major, and bruising surgery. But they worked from my foot upwards and compress as they go, by gradually rolling up a garment. I had 15-20 entry points (no one counted) and each was left open to continue draining, which makes the first 48 hours (bed rest) quite mucky.

Post operative swelling was a concern considering my leg was compressed, and hours 24 to 48 were painful, because the post op compression is so important.

But going home today (22nd) with a tender leg, but well and with my skin wrinkling (with compression this heals well).

Mission accomplished.

I know this does little for the lymphoedema, it does deal with the one major symptom, our large limbs, and if 50% of our swelling is fatty deposits associated with lymphoedema, then your limbs will be 50% smaller.

16 Replies

Where did you have this procedure done?

Thats great news its made such a difference to you.Is this available on the nhs?

To answer you both. Yes it was under the NHS, but as I have commented in the past this took a lot of searching and persuading to get my GP to do this.

My consultant has told me that he doesn't advertise his lymphoedema surgery services through the NHS because he would be inundated with requests and wouldn't be able to deal with his core customers who are breast cancer patients. I seem to be his pathfinder at the moment, but I know he is also seeing other such patients as me.

The detectives amongst you will be able to work out who and where I had this done, from my postings history, but I am reluctant to offer his services when he may have to disappoint, however Lynora I will PM you what you ask

What does this surgery due in the long term? Will your leg just go back to an increased size over time? What are the risks?

in reply to Pjtrant

I had lymph node transplant surgery in December, and this was the next and hopefully last step.

As I now have a reduced chance of getting cellulitis and with better and easier control of the lymphoedema, I am not expecting to get the build up of fat that I have had since my lymphoedema started.

I am hoping that this is a one off, but who knows. As I have said before, there are the natural dangers of operating on a lymphy limb, but the more operations that are performed worldwide, the consensus is that lymphy limbs actually respond well to surgery.

Hi - thrilled to hear that your surgery went so well and that the Lympha-Press press pre-surgery helped move so much fluid - if you still have access to a Lympha-Press, it would also be excellent post surgery using very gently pressure to help reduce the surgical swelling and improve shape, whilst of course keeping your lymphatic system as healthy as it can be . May i ask who your surgeon was and where you had your surgery? NNE;

Naomi, I have PM'd my consultants details to you.

I have been discharged now and don't have access to the Lymphapress machine anymore but hey that would have made sense once all of the oozing stopped.

It is maybe something I can suggest to him for future patients as I was his first lymphy-liposuction patient.

Best wishes for the future and delighted that you won your GP battle and are a pathfinder for your surgeon xx


24 hose for the rest of your life as in Sweden where the procedure is a great success ?


I know the same procedure is being used at The Christie. I am waiting for the same procedure at St George's if my P P G will fund it. That seems unlikely unfortunately. The after care is rigorous but I am advised that there may be no reduction in the pain I suffer in my arm. Otherwise the team, surgeon, geneticist & Proffessor of dermatology are optimistic that I will have a good outcome in regard to bulk reduction. To ensure that continues though I have undertaken to wear hose for 24 hours a day for the rest of my life. The team that will be overseeing that have been to Sweden to train.

I have Lipo- Lymphoedma the latter being secondary to Breast cancer. My swelling is severe.

I hope that is helpful.

Dear Syrup O1

I came across you as being in the same area as us. I see you have had some surgery. I sincerely hope that it has continued to benefit you and wonder if you

can up date us.

With best wishes

in reply to ofcourse

The best thing I can say is the surgery hasn't been a failure, but I've still got a swollen leg and it hasn't noticeably gone down, but it does seem to react better to treatment and I am a lot more confident with it.

I haven't had any intensive therapy since my last op, and an due some bandaging in the new year, so it will be good to see what happens then, but have not had any cellulitis attacks so maybe I do have flow, but just very little of it.

Thank you for your reply. I'm glad some flow has been restored.

We have primary Lymphodema. My mother is now 98. we are lucky to have the

Lympha pants - they keep the flow and stop the progression. Her leg is 13 and a half at the ankle and 17 at the calf. Both can go up one or two inches without the

pants and daily hosiery.

As you've been so fortunate with treatment maybe you can get them on the


With very best wishes

Yes I was able to have it all on the NHS, however I am only 40, so the hope of offsetting the long term cost of treatment against the short term cost of operations may have worked in my favour. My leg gets to over 2 foot around the calf so garments are not that effective, but I have invested in a Lymphapress machine, which is having a good effect of softening my leg

How are you doing 2 years on? I'm considering the procedure

I am having SAPL on 8/27. I'm terrified and hopeful all at the same time.

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