PhysioPod Review their Attendance at The Lipoedema Ladies Second AGM in Leeds,
PhysioPod UK Ltd provide feedback on their presentation of DEEP OSCILLATION electrostatic
massage therapy at The Lipoedema Ladies Second Annual General Meeting.
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, UK, October 09, 2013 -- The BIG MEET UP 2013 of Lipoedema
Ladies was held on 21st/22nd September at The Leeds Plaza Hotel. It was truly lovely to meet the
passionate, inspiring and glamourous "A" team of Lipoedema Ladies UK Support Group; aka Isobel
MacEwan, Joanne Bird, Michelle Ellis (of Wingz) and Cara Jones. All four ladies have Lipoedema
and share in a very strong belief that they will, in their lifetime and with the help and support of
worldwide healthcare professionals, find a "cure" for Lipoedema, not only for themselves, but for
their daughters and grand-daughters too.
What is Lipoedema?
Lipoedema (NOT Lymphoedema) is a chronic, hereditary and genetic disorder of the adipose tissue
(or body fat) which is both disfiguring and painful. It predominantly effects women (although men
can also suffer) from the age of puberty and beyond and sufferers may have a normal slim body
shape and then suddenly, without changes made to diet or exercise regime, become fatter and fatter
below the waist. Hips and legs become hugely disproportioned to the upper body and in some cases,
upper arms are effected too. As Lipoedema progresses, additional, expanding fat cells interfere with
the pathways of lymphatic vessels and sufferers can develop secondary Lymphoedema and it then
becomes known as Lipo-Lymphoedema. The effects of Lipoedema on the patient can also cause
great mental trauma for the sufferer.
Who are Lipoedema Ladies?
Lipoedema Ladies support ladies all over the UK with Lipoedema via a popular online website and
private forum. They raise awareness whenever and wherever they can. The website includes articles
on lifestyle, fashion, exercise and beauty, with dietary advice, tips and receipes. Medical matters are
addressed though specific advice should be referred to a local lymphoedema service or GP.
Lipoedema Ladies help in clinical trials and questionnaires for the NHS, private health companies
and therapists and undertake the testing of therapies and treatments aimed at Lipoedema sufferers,
for private companies and individuals. Their aim is to bring awareness of Lipoedema to medics and
the women living with Lipoedema who are unaware.
Who are Lipoedema UK?
Lipoedema Ladies work closely with Lipoedema UK, whose board include Councillor Suzanne
Evans as Chair, with Lead Research Co-ordinator Sharie Fetzer, both lipoedema sufferers. They
have medical support from St Georges Hospital, including the highly-respected, Professor Peter
Mortimer (Lipoedema UK Patron) and Consultant Nurse, Sandy Ellis. Lipoedema UK have a three-
fold mission to: Raise awareness, Promote good treatment, Commission and fund research.
Lipoedema UK have conducted the first patient survey ever on Lipoedema and the results will be
announced at The British Lymphology Annual Conference on 6th/7th/8th October in Birmingham
to be held at the ICC. The results of this will be crucial to help lobby the medical profession and the
Government to initiate better care pathways, raise awareness and identify new research possibilities.
As part of the conference, there will be a whole session set aside for Lipoedema & Obesity.
Catherine Seo Ph.D. will present at the Conference with other leading speakers on the subject.
Although Lipoedema was first recognised in the US in the 1940s by The Mayo Clinic, very little
research has been done into the disease. It is not in medical text books or taught in medical schools
and so few health professionals even know it exists. As a result, Lipoedema is frequently
misdiagnosed as obesity and sufferers do not get the appropriate treatment or advice; and secondary
health problems such as osteoarthritis, varicose veins, lymphoedema, eating disorders and disability
develop all too frequently. The NHS recognised Lipoedema as a condition in October 2012.
The BIG MEET UP 2013!
The Two Day Lipoedema Ladies event began with a "Hello and Welcome" video message from Dr
Karen L. Herbst Ph.D M.D Patron of Lipoedema Ladies. Dr. Herbst was voted as one of San
Diego’s top doctors in San Diego Magazine 2009 and in the "Guide to America's Top Physicians"
in 2013. Day One Speakers included: Guy Slater MBBS, FRCS, Consultant Surgeon, who
specialises in laparoscopic surgery and bariatric surgery who began the days events with a very
interesting presentation on bariatric surgery and Lipoedema. Jane Harding Msc., SRP, Macmillan
Lymphoedema Specialist Physiotherapist spoke about the difference between Lipoedema and
Lymphoedema. Gudrun Collins (CTKI) talked about kinesio taping and its application to help
alleviate the pain of lipoedema. After lunch, Mary Fickling spoke about the benefits of DEEP
OSCILLATION® for Lipoedema and Lipo-Lymphoedema and Julie Soroczyn worked her magic
through the crowd with the HIVAMAT® 200 on the treatment trolley and her vibrating gloved
hands. She provided, several treatments during the talk and during the weekend, to arthritic hands
and aching knees, swollen limbs and ankles, tense shoulders and painful backs. Sometimes
immediate relief was given to areas of tenderness, acute pain and relief to the feeling of heavy
“fluidy” limbs. Nina Blakemore, Catwalk and Television plus size model and Speaker at the event
on the second day, emailed after the event: “Thank you for the trial with the Oscillation machine -
legs have been "swishing" since the treatment, it really felt like it got everything moving once again
and as was like walking on air - the "heaviness" so often felt in both legs was completely gone -
truly amazing and very exciting!"
Mary Fickling spoke about the benefits and clinically proven, physiological effects of DEEP
OSCILLATION® and was happy to answer questions including how ladies could get treatment and
how they could possibly come to acquire their own unit. DEEP OSCILLATION® is provided by
some NHS hospitals in the UK and Ireland, and by many Private Manual Lymphatic Drainage
Therapists, See Therapist Listings on the PhysioPod website. PhysioPod advise all Lipoedema
ladies to see a qualified MLD therapist using the therapy first for assessment and treatment to
evalulate its effectiveness for them personally and to identify any possible contraindications. On
purchase of a unit, the therapist will demonstrate the way to work with the unit, initially opening
and clearing lymphatic pathways ready for the increased lymph coming its way and how to work in
the correct direction of lymphatic flow. Dr Alison Merrick was next up to talk about Bowen
Therapy and how it may help Lipoedema. Her clinic have started a study into the effects of Bowen
Technique on Lipoedema and would like to recruit some Lipoedema Ladies for their case studies,
enquiries should go to Dr Alison Merrick PhD, email@example.com. Workshops were
held afterwards for ladies to learn and experience DEEP OSCILLATION®, Kinesio taping, Bowen
Technique and Manual Lymphatic Drainage. In the evening a lovely meal was had together in
Chino Latino at Leeds Park Plaza where the AGM was held and some ladies took to the town -
much fun and frivolity was had by all - a fabulous end to a very positive first day.
To start the day, a skype conversation was held with a prominent member of Lipoedema Ladies
who was unable to attend. Ladies were then treated to the Premier of a Documentary "You Mean
It's Not My Fault: Lipoedema, A Fat Disorder", by Catherine Seo. Catherine will be showing this at
The BLS conference in Birmingham on October 6th and it will then appear on Lipoedema Ladies
website for all to see, so be sure to take a look after the 6th. Lipoedema Ladies are proud to be
sponsoring Catherine to deliver the documentary at The BLS Conference and help raise awareness
within the medical Lymphoedema community. Sharie Fetzer, Board Member of Lipoedema UK
then gave a wonderful talk on the benefits of exercise for Lipoedema and how she recommends
swimming, walking and cycling for ladies suffering with Lipoedema and not high impact exercise
like jogging and step aerobics which might worsen the condition and cause joint pain. To read more
from Sharie about exercise in water visit the Lipoedema Ladies website.
After lunch the fabulous Nina Blakemore talked about her career as a plus size photographic,
catwalk and television model and how she is passionate about promoting a healthy body image.
Surviving on an apple a day and two hours exercise to become an "acceptable" size 8 model led her
to seek help, she now has more work as a healthy size 18 than she ever did as a size 8. Nina then
drew out the lucky winners for the Prize Draw. Prizes included a two night romantic break for two
at 94 DR Edinburgh with Dinner at an Edinburgh Restaurant, a pair of leather boots by The
Bootmakers, Vouchers for Amazon, John Lewis, a Red Letter Day voucher, an E Reader, a personal
nutrional advice voucher, a Radleys handbag and other lovely jewellery and smaller prizes. Amy
Godfrey, a fat-bias comedian ended everything on a high. Finally, the A team spoke about how far
they had come and what they had achieved since they set up in 2010 and asked the audience for
ideas about raising awareness. Mary Fickling suggested that Angela Mahandru, Editor of CHOICE
Health & Wellbeing Magazine which PhysioPod have featured in on several occasions, would be a
great place to have a feature, as it has a very wide readership. CHOICE were contacted on the
following Monday and a feature, written by Lipoedema Ladies, will appear in the Nov/Dec 13
Key Announcements at the BIG MEET UP...
1. Sharie Fetzer announced that, 50,000 UK medical professionals will soon have access to an E-
Learning module all about Lipoedema and Lipo-lymphoedema and so they will be able to diagnose
the condition and advise on treatment at an early stage. Education and research is key to finding a
cure for this condition. It will be wonderful for ladies and their children, to not be given the mis-
educated advice of “eat less and exercise more” and have access to the help they desperately need.
2. We also heard that Dr. Karen Herbst, The Lipoedema Ladies Patron and Catherine Seo,
lipoedema advocate, are in conversations with Novartis, the largest biomedical company in the
world. The director of research based in Basel Switzerland, and the lead scientist in Fat Metabolism
are interested in pursuing a research study into lipoedema. The Research Director from Basel and
Catherine will be meeting with Dr. Foeldi in Germany, the world’s expert in lymphology in
November to further research possibilities. Once the research study is established, lipoedema fat
tissue from liposuction procedures will be used in the research process. If you are planning to have
liposuction, and are willing to have the removed tissue used to further research into a cure, please
contact Catherine at firstname.lastname@example.org who is coordinating the efforts.
PhysioPod looking forward to supporting Lipoedema Ladies and Lipoedema UK in anyway they
can and to help make The Big Meet Up of 2014 an even bigger success.
Both Lipoedema Ladies and Lipoedema UK are 'not-for-profit' organisations and need donations to
fund their valuable work.
About PhysioPod UK Limited:
PhysioPod UK Limited are the Exclusive Distributor for DEEP OSCILLATION therapy in the UK
and Republic of Ireland and are an NHS approved Supplier.
PhysioPod UK Limited
0115 9167 685