Fertility treatment fourteen years ago triggered emergency surgery. Susan O’Hara left the hospital and began to notice one leg was noticeably bigger than the other.
It took tendonitis for this busy mom and public servant to seek medical attention. She was blown away when the doctor asked, “Who’s treating your lymphedema?”
Lymphedema was not yet in her vocabulary, but soon water aerobics, velcro wraps, and other tools to manage the condition became a regular part of her life. Lap band surgery resulted in the loss of 171 pounds, but why were her calves still 26 inches each? After the successful weight loss, walking 14 miles a day, and eating a very restrictive diet, she concluded: “This was not just metabolic obesity.” Her knees were dislocating 7 – 8 times a day.
The social lymphedema communities were a tremendous help to Susan – and then she discovered lipedema.
An avid researcher, she found Dr. Jaime Schwartz and recently underwent her second lipedema surgery. Beyond the physical challenges, Susan also has a heart for the emotional pain associated with lipedema. A stunning statistic she shares in this interview is a sobering call for help to offer hope to others with this condition.
Lympha Press is proud to share these stories for the very purpose of encouraging the Lipedema community. We are proud to help manage this condition with the Optimal Plus, which is cleared by the FDA for the treatment of lipedema. Follow Susan O’Hara @Legs_LikeMine and be encouraged by her inspiring journey.