Welcome to the LipoClinic Dr. Heck

It was in 2000 when a freind told me about a completely unknown disease. Affetced women suffered from thick legs and sports and diets showed no effect at all. Even doctors did not understand or accept their suffering. Shame, self-reproach and frustration were huge – a severe suffering! At this point, I did not even suspect that women of my own family were affected. As an experienced surgeon, in th years to follow I developed a completey new and long-lasting surgery method: the lipedema surgery. To stop the lipedema, to be free from pain, to not ever again have to wear compression garments and to give back feminity; these are my goals today. And it is out of these goals that my vocation arose: To make way by freedom from pain, a reconstructed body figure and a stronger self-esteem – for a new life!

Lipedema

Clinical Picture

Clinical Picture

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The Treatment

The Treatment

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The Prognosis

The Prognosis

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Clinical Picture

Lipedema

“The disease that everybody sees, but nobody knows about” – and about 3-4 million women are affected in Germany alone.

The lipedema takes a life-long, chronical turn and is often heridated to daughters. Its causes are still unknown, but all in all at the momemt it is presumed that its hormone-driven and that the female hormone estrogen is responsible for an accumulation and enlargement of fat cells. Typically, the lipedema manifests itself at the start of puberty (85% of the cases), during pregnancy or during menopause. The massive increase of fat cells results in a lack of oxygen in the tissue, causing the death of parts of the fat cells. This again sets in motion a chronic inflammatory process, which leads to tissue damage and pain.

It leads to an increased permeability of the vascular walls, allowing lymphs to escape into the tissue which cannot be transported anymore by the intact lymphatic system. It results in the typical feeling of pressure and tension. The higher fragility of the blood vessels is responsible for the tendency for hematomas.

In 97% of the cases the legs are affected, in 31% of the cases also the arms show the typical symptoms. In our experience, we assume that the arms, even in a state where they do not show any symptoms, do at least inherit the predisposition to develop a state which will require a surgical treatment in the course of the disease. The manifestation on the arms is often lesser or manifests itself in a later stage.

Most patients who fell ill during puberty do suffer greatly psychologically from the physical effects of lipedema. Furthermore, the lipedema does not respond or only scarcely to attempts to lose weight via sports and diets. This circumstance augments the frustration of affected women even more.

The LipoClinic Dr. Heck is specialized in the treatment of the lipedema. We know the long ordeal of suffering only too well, a way which is often formed by ignorance and incomprehension of this disease. With our experience which we have gained over the years we would like to help you to risk the step into your “new life”.

The Stages

 

Stage 1

The skin is even, subcutaneous fat tissue is thick, the fat structure slightly nodular, even Stage 1 can be painful.

Stage 2

The skin is uneven with dents, bumps and a nodular fat structure.

Stage 3

The tissue is rougher and harder, formation of great skin pockets.

The Treatment

The only possibility for a successful therapy of lipedema is surgery.

The first measure in treating lipedema is the so-called complete decongestive therapy, the treatment via flat-knit compression garments and manual lymphatic drainage. Nevertheless, this form of therapy alone to treat lipedema has now lost its right of treatment. Still, it remains – together with the normalisation of the body weight via sports and conscious nutrition – an essential cofactor for the surgical treatment via liposuction.

Flat-knit garments and manual lymphatic drainage aim at reducing the fluid retentions but are not capable of reducing the pathological accumulated fatty tissue.

The only long-term and treatment guiding treatment is the surgery via high-volume liposuction. After first tries at the end of the 90’s, it has now become a daily-routine surgical intervention. With a consequent and competent execution, excellent results with only few complications are obtainable without exception.

The LipoClinic Dr. Heck performs more than 1,000 surgeries per year and certainly is one of the world’s leading addresses in lipedema surgery.

The Technique

Water-Jet Assisted Liposuction WAL

As a rule, Tumescent Local Anaesthesia in form of the TLA-method or the Water-Jet Assisted Liposuction technique (WAL) are put into practice. In comparison of both techniques in our clinic and after years of operating with the TLA-technique, in 2012 the Water-Jet Assisted Liposuction technique established itself. The technique has been used since 2006. In contrast to TLA, we see its benefits in the patients’ comfort and safety.

Using a water-jet, fat cells are detached from the tissue structure and suctioned in the same process. In contrast to TLA, instead of a large-volume of rinsing solution, only a small amount has to be injected so that the extremities stay in their anatomical shape and can be evaluated in an optimal way at all times by the surgeon. This facilitates a precise suction and the new contouring of the extremity. In addition, using WAL, there is no need for a long time for filling or exposure time. After the injection of the tumescence solution, the surgeon can directly start with the liposuction. On the one hand, this reduces the operation time significantly for the patient and on the other hand, drugs of the tumescence solution cannot pass into the circulation in a significant amount. The risk for drug-initiated side effects on the cardiovascular system is being reduced significantly. The technique is not harmful to the tissue, the risk of hurting vessels and nerves is very low and as it has been proven, non-existent for damage of the lymphatic channels.

The risk for drug-initiated side effects on the cardiovascular system is being reduced significantly. The technique is not harmful to the tissue, the risk of hurting vessels and nerves is very low and as it has been proven, non-existent for damage of the lymphatic channels.

The surgery stops the lipedema disease, usually you are free from pain within a few days. In many cases, there is no more need for therapy more in the long-term, meaning that many of you will not need the complex decongestive therapy nor manual lymphatic drainage anymore.

And with this, your “new life” begins. Starting with boots and skirts your activity level rises, and so do the self-esteem and also the pleasure of your new body sensation. And this does not only please you, but us as well!

The Prognosis

What to expect from surgery?

The initial diagnosis is important. Young and in stage 1 with the onset of pain, the fat tissue is not congested yet and the skin is firm.

Via surgery a completely natural form of the legs and arms can be achieved. The lipedema is removed and we speak of healing. The later the lipedema has been diagnosed, the more time the edema has had time to damage the skin. Usually, the calves are still very firm and we can create an anatomically nice figure. Nevertheless, the skin of the upper legs often is a lot looser. This will not change with surgery, however wrinkles rarely occur.

In the “final stage 3” the loose form of the skin does not change. Nevertheless, the volume of the arms and legs can be reduced significantly. Via the surgical decongestion of the legs, the pain can be reduced well or even completely removed. Compression garments help to achieve a nice figure. The dress size is smaller and the lipedema is stopped. Even saggy skin of the arms does tighten surprisingly well after liposuction when wearing compression garments, making a surgical skin tightening unnecessary.

What is gone, is gone! Removed fat tissue does not regenerate.

When “simply more
Sport & Diet” does not help

Dr. med. Falk-Christian Heck

The
Team

Dr. med. Stefan Welss Dr. med. Falk Christian Heck
Dr. med. Stefan Welss

Specialist for plastic and aesthetic surgery
Specialist for surgery

LipoClinic Dr. Heck since January 2018
Consultation and surgery of lipedema
LipoClinic Español, Madrid, Consultation and surgery of lipedema

Chief of Medicine 2012-2017
Clinic-im-Centrum Specialist Hospital for Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery in Dortmund and Münster, Germany

Leading Physician at the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and Hand Surgery · 2004-2012
Public Hospital Pedro Altamirano La Trinidad, Nicaragua 2006-2012
Private Hospital Managua Hills Las Colinas, Managua, Nicaragua

Medical Specialist in Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery 2003
St. Elisabeth Krankenhaus, Oberhausen, Germany
Berufsgenossenschaftliche Unfallklinik, Duisburg (BGU), Germany
Hospital Diakonie, Düsseldorf Kaiserswerth, Germany

Medical Specialist in General Surgery 1998
St.Josef-Hospital, Oberhausen, Germany
Akademisches Lehrkrankenhaus of the University of Essen, Germany

Dissertation Dr. med, 1992 Heinrich-Heine-Universität, Düsseldorf, Germany

University 1983-1991
Studies in Medicine at the Heinrich-Heine- Universität, Düsseldorf, Germany

Memberships
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Chirurgie (German Society of Surgery)
Deutsche Gesellschaft für plastische und ästhetische Chirurgie Interplast (German Society of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery)
Lipödemhilfe e.v (German self-help association for lipedema)
ADALIPE (Spanish self-help association for lipedema)

Qualifications
Emergency Medical Physician

Dr. med. Falk Christian Heck

Medical Specialist in General Surgery, Medical Specialist in Trauma Surgery and Orthopaedics, Medical Specialist in Sports Medicine

First surgery of lipedema – 2002

Foundation of Praxis für Lipödem-Chirurgie – September 2005
in Essen, Germany

Foundation of LipoClinic Dr. Heck – September 2015
in Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany

Over 1,000 surgeries per year in the LipoClinic
in Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany

Medical Specialist in Orthopaedics & Trauma Surgery 2009

Head of Department 7/2001 – 12/2002
Department for Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery, Elisabeth-Krankenhaus Oberhausen, Germany

Plastic Surgery
Occupation of 6 months at the Universitätsklinik Bergmannsheil Bochum, Germany, Clinic for Plastic, Reconstructive and Hand Surgery and Center for patients with severe burn injuries

Medical Specialist in Trauma Surgery 2000
Universitätsklinik Bergmannsheil Bochum, Germany; Trauma Centre for severely injured with an intensive care unit; spinal injuries, chronic inflammation of the bones

Medical Specialist in General Surgery 1998
Elisabeth-Krankenhaus Oberhausen, Germany;
Focus on hip and knee endoprosthetics, arthroscopy

PhD (doctoral thesis)
Universitäts-Kinderklinik Essen: Diagnosis, Therapy and Prognosis of Congenital Malformations in Children of the Kidneys and the Urinary Tract

University 1985-1991
Studies in Medicine in Essen, Germany

„Greetings from the Way of St. James! Why am I
running? Because I can do it again!“

Dorina Olt – Patient

The
LipoClinic

Culinary tip

For dinner and supper, we recommend the restaurant Roadstop.

Accommodation close to the clinic

We recommend AirBnB.

As an alternative FeWo Kania is very popular.

You can find hotels on:: booking.com

Parking at the Clinic

You can find parking spots either in front of the clinic or in Parsevalstraße.

Getting there in a relaxed manner

By car:

Navigation system: Zeppelinstraße 321, 45470 Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany.
Without navigation system: autobahn A52, departure Essen-Kettwig (MH Flughafen), then turn left onto the road and after 700m you will find our clinic on the right side.

By train:

Arrival at Mülheim main station: take the taxi to Zeppelinstraße 321. Costs approximately 15€.
Alternatively arrival Essen main station: take the taxi to Zeppelinstraße 321. Costs approximately 25€.

By plane:

Arrival at Düsseldorf International (DUS): Either you take the train to Mülheim an der Ruhr main station or you take a taxi (fixed price 48€ – Taxi Stephanie, phone: +49 208 52222).

Love for sure goes through the stomach

After lipedema surgery, your body needs a lot of energy to recover – and healthy food supports this. This is why we cook light and easy digestible food freshly on a daily basis.

Your second living room

Our patient rooms are bright and cosy with a welcoming atmosphere to support your healing process. Time passes even faster when talking to fellow patients or a good series, which you can watch on Netflix.

Kontaktformular EN

  • We are looking forward to hearing from you!

    You have to fulfil the following requests for an appointment at our clinic:

    • You need custom-made flat-knit compression tights grade 2. Your phlebologist or family doctor can prescribe them.
    • We need the diagnosis lipedema made by another expert (e.g. your phlebologist) in written form.
    • You have made a vein check concerning varicose veins and it showed no pathological findings.
    • With respect to narcosis, your body weight should not exceed 130kg. With higher body weights, we decide individually.
  • Please confirm that we are allowed to use your personal data for the time necessary to fulfil its intended purpose. We will use the transmitted data only for the purpose they have been send to us for. Please read our Data Protection Declaration on this.