Prevention of Progression of Lipedema With Liposuction Using Tumescent Local Anesthesia: Results of an International Consensus Conference

Dermatol Surg. 2020 Feb;46(2):220-228. doi: 10.1097/DSS.0000000000002019.


Background: Lipedema is a chronic, progressive disorder of subcutaneous adipose tissue that usually affects the lower extremities of women. Also known as "two-body syndrome," the fat accumulations in lipedema are unsightly and painful. The disorder is well-known in Europe but is largely unrecognized and underdiagnosed in the United States.

Objective: To hold the First International Consensus Conference on Lipedema with the purpose of reviewing current European guidelines and the literature regarding the long-term benefits that have been reported to occur after lymph-sparing liposuction for lipedema using tumescent local anesthesia.

Methods: International experts on liposuction for lipedema were convened as part of the First International Congress on Lipedema in Vienna, Austria, June 9 to 10, 2017.

Results: Multiple studies from Germany have reported long-term benefits for as long as 8 years after liposuction for lipedema using tumescent local anesthesia.

Conclusion: Lymph-sparing liposuction using tumescent local anesthesia is currently the only effective treatment for lipedema.

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia, Local / methods*
  • Anesthetics, Local / administration & dosage
  • Consensus Development Conferences as Topic
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lidocaine / administration & dosage
  • Lipectomy / adverse effects
  • Lipectomy / methods
  • Lipectomy / standards*
  • Lipedema / diagnosis
  • Lipedema / etiology
  • Lipedema / surgery*
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain, Procedural / etiology
  • Pain, Procedural / prevention & control*
  • Patient Care Planning / standards
  • Postoperative Care / methods
  • Postoperative Care / standards
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Subcutaneous Fat
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anesthetics, Local
  • Lidocaine