President & Founder Katia Page
President & Founder Katia Page
My name is Katia Page and I have been diagnosed with stage 4 Lipedema. I watched my mother’s passing due to complications from it. Now I have dedicated my life to educating, advocating and helping others with Lipedema.
In 2013 after several hospitalizations with infections and illness, my doctor at the time told me I would need surgery or I would die. Unfortunately, that doctor never discussed what type of surgery would be needed. Yes, I had been diagnosed with lymphedema since 2006 but what was happening now was different. I knew something else must be wrong and this doctor had no answers for me. Meanwhile my mother was having medical difficulties, in and out of the hospital with infections and her body filling with fluid. While helping my mother, I began to search the internet for explanations as to what could also be wrong. I came across a lymphedema website that also talked about Lipedema, a condition I had not heard of before.
I joined an online support groups for people suffering with Lipedema. I found a doctor that specializes in the disease and was officially diagnosed with Stage 4 Lipedema. Now I knew how dire my situation was and I had to be proactive. While figuring the next medical course of action to save my life, I became a Lipedema ambassador out of shock at the lack of information about a disease that is widely misdiagnosed or under-diagnosed as obesity. First, like many chronic diseases, there is no cure. Second, Lipedema does not have an International Classification of Disease (ICD) code which is needed by insurance companies for billing. The surgeries, treatments, compression garments and supplements needed were not covered and are a life extending necessity yet, are a serious financial burden.
My mother’s condition was worsening. Her doctors had yet to diagnose her with the disease even with the new information I discovered. While I was still trying to get her help, she passed away. This disease Lipedema not only almost exclusively affects women but it is hereditary. To me, it was a no brainer: I have been diagnosed so my mother must have it so getting her help should have been easier. I began to see through all of my struggles with my mother and as a Stage 4 Lipedema sufferer that I could make a difference. I knew that many women simply cannot afford the expense of the treatments for this disease. This motivated me to do more.
I expanded my personal advocacy and blog “Katia The Lipedema Queen” into the organization The Lipedema Queen. We encourage women with lipedema to embrace the Queens that they are and raise funds to financially assist with the expenses that will be incurred for surgeries, treatments, and medical grade compression garments, which are not covered by insurance, to help extend their lives until a cure is found. The Lipedema Queen is an organization designed to show that a disease does not define you. Be courageously confident and embrace you!
Thank you for your support,