Young male patient and 3 female patients with lipodystrophy; all patients show the characteristic lack of subcutaneous fat

Generalised and partial
lipodystrophy (GL and PL)

A rare disease
with many faces

GL and PL are very rare, serious diseases. Typically they present as a lack of subcutaneous fatty tissue, either being totally absent (GL) or partially absent (PL).  This causes disturbances of sugar and lipid metabolism. These are very often difficult to treat with traditional therapeutic approaches.1,2

Male adolscent with generalized lipodystrophy (GL).

GL patient

Typical signs of GL or PL

The fatty tissue under the skin is absent, significantly reduced or unusually distributed1,2

Prominent muscles and veins1,2

Always eating or insatiable hunger1,2

Metabolic disorders that are unusually difficult to treat1,2

Insulin resistant diabetes in non-obese person

Recurring pancreatitis

Early development of a fatty liver not related to alcohol consumption

Woman with partial lipodystrophy (PL).

PL patient

Could it be GL or PL? Go to the ”Health Care Professional“ or ”Patient and Carer“ Area for further information.

1 Brown et al., The Diagnosis and Management of Lipodystrophy Syndromes: A Multi-Society Practice Guideline. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2016; 101: 4500 – 4511.

2 Handelsman Y, Oral EA, Bloomgarden ZT, et al. The clinical approach to the detection of lipodystrophy – An AACE Consensus Statement. Endocr Pract 2013;19:107–116.