Brave sisters bare their legs of agony
PAINFUL fat – a misdiagnosed and misunderstood common medical problem – has brought these three Adelaide sisters to tears for years.
Helen Hughes, 70, Susan Bastick, 68, and Diane Pastro, 65, have lipoedema – an incurable, painful and debilitating condition affecting 15 per cent of Australian women. It results in disproportionate deposit of fat cells in thighs, hips, buttocks and arms.
“There are many, many people who are being unfairly judged,” Helen said.
The sisters are baring their legs to expose the condition and lead to more diagnosis.
The trio are part of research involving an expert team of South Australian researchers.
Flinders University Professor Neil Piller says the three-year study will determine whether lipoedema is linked to genetics.
“The study will help us understand the genetic basis of lipoedema, provide us with new tools for diagnosis and may help us treat the condition,” Prof Piller said.
The Adelaide sisters are keen to assist in finding a cure, even though they may not personally benefit.
“It’s too late for me,” Helen said. “But it’s what the study can do for my daughters and granddaughters.”
RESEARCH: Sisters Diane Pastro, Helen Hughes and Sue Bastick suffer from lipoedema and are bravely baring their legs to raise awareness of the condition.