I am a board certified Endocrinologist by training and have always been interested in fat - why do daughters have fat just where their mothers do, and why do men develop large abdomens and skinny arms and legs as they age. While training at the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington, USA, I was introduced to patients with familial partial lipodystrophy and Madelung's disease (multiple symmetric lipomatosis; MSL). I was fortunate to work with one patient with MSL in Los Angeles and have come to know more as I continued working in San Diego. While conversing with the owner of the "About Madelung's Disease" website, she told me to look into Dercum's Disease. Finding out about lipedema was next. Since that time, I have seen many people with adipose tissue disorders (ATDs) such as Dercum's disease, familial multiple lipomatosis (FML), Madelung's disease and lipedema (lipoedema and lipolymphedema) from all over the world. While much research remains unpublished, I want to share my understanding of these disorders and provide suggestions for treatment so that you and your healthcare provider can help you live a better life.