Woman trolled for condition that caused elephant legs spends £10k on surgery
A woman spent most of her life with a rare condition that left her with "elephant legs" before spending £10,000 on surgery.
Yasmina Kemppainen, 36, began to experience pain in her legs when she was just 12 years old.
Soon after, the communications manager's legs began to swell and she suspected something wasn't right.
As a teenager, people would tell the Finnish that she was "too skinny" before calling her "fat legs".
She finally visited a doctor who diagnosed her with lipoedema, a condition which causes an abnormal build-up of fat.
But from the age of 12, she hid her legs away until her diagnosis in 2018 – covering up for a total of 21 years.
At work, she found herself tiring easily and the condition slowly took over her life.
Other adults would say Yasmina had "elephant legs" or told her to lose weight because she was "too big".
For those who suffer from lipoedema, it isn't as simple as losing weight as it could alleviate symptoms.
In February and April 2019, Yasmina decided to undergo liposuction surgery in Germany where the fat was removed.
She spent around £10,320 on the operation which meant she had to switch to a keto diet consisting of high-fat, low-carb content.
Prior to the surgery, Yasmina weighed 10st 7lbs and wore a size XL on her lower half, now she tips the scales at 8st 6lbs.
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Since the procedure, her confidence has grown heaps as she feels like she's taken control of her life again.
She began posting her story online in a bid to help and inspire other women who might be in a similar situation.
Yasmina said: "It was depressing to notice. People said I was 'too skinny' but I just saw my fat legs.
"Even when I became an adult, people would still comment on it and say that my legs looked similar to an elephant's.
"I didn't like to go to social events because I didn't want to show my legs. I didn't go to the beach. I couldn't even manage at work."
Now speaking after her surgery, Yasmina added: "I feel strong. I feel confident. Lipoedema doesn't control my life anymore.
"I want to raise awareness about lipoedema for all of the other ladies who are suffering. I hope my story gives them hope.
"I've been surrounded by supportive friends and my husband throughout all of this. My husband always tells me how strong I am.
"I never would have met him without the surgery. We met at a party and I never would have gone to a party before.
"Don't give up. Life can surprise you in a very positive way."
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