A WOMAN who battled for 30 years for a diagnosis for a life-changing condition now faces waiting until next summer for an operation.
Anne Henry was due to have her long awaited operation to treat lipodema – a swelling of the arms and legs caused by a build-up of fat cells – this month, but she has now been told her surgery cannot go ahead due to theatre waiting times.
Scotland has only one surgeon who carries out the liposuction op she needs, despite the condition affecting more than a quarter of a million women.
Last month, MSP Monica Lennon raised the issue in the Scottish Parliament, asking public health minister Joe FitzPatrick whether having just one surgeon is sufficient.
Mr FitzPatrick has agreed to meet Ms Lennon to discuss better ways to treat the condition, but wrote to her saying there was “no demand for a second surgeon in Scotland.”
Anne, 47, said: “For over 30 years I suffered and struggled with being told I must be ‘just fat’.
“Thousands of others are being told the same thing when there is a treatment that can help them if only there were more surgeons and more funds.”
Miss Lennon believes this is “yet another shocking example of women’s health issues being underfunded”.
Sharie Fetzer of charity Lipoedema UK said: “Lipoedema doesn’t just leave patients with physical problems, the psychological issues are also hard to deal with.”
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