International Consults Available - Click here for details.

FAQs for International Patients

Yes, Dr Lekich treats international patients, there are no additional barriers or wait times for international patients, nor are there any extra fees.  In fact, the exchange rate of your currency with the Australian Dollar (AUD) may make the cost of travel and surgery very attractive.

Learn about our holistic approach, as well as the experience of surgery and recovery on the Gold Coast our page here.

Please keep in mind that Dr Lekich has a strict surgical protocol to ensure maximised patient outcomes and we will work with your local medical & allied health teams to ensure you are surgically ready before you leave your home country.

  • Prior to surgery, we will request that a Vascular Surgeon or Phlebologist in your country will exclude other causes of swollen legs, which are important to manage before any lipoedema surgery.
  • You will be required to undertake appropriate conservative management measures for at least 8 weeks prior to surgery, including custom made flat knit compression garments, a low inflammatory diet, manual lymphatic drainage therapy and lipoedema friendly exercise.
  • We will ask your local doctors to exclude a hole in the heart (Patent Foramen Ovale) which can cause complications, such as stroke, during surgery if left untreated.
  • In preparation for your long-haul flight (over 5 hours) to the Gold Coast and to reduce the risk of clotting, we will coordinate with your local specialist or general practitioner to provide a low dose of blood thinning medications in combination with the flat knit compression garments you are already using.
  • You would arrive on the Gold Coast 2 weeks prior to surgery, so that we can provide a scan of your legs to exclude any blood clots pre-surgery.  We will also scan your legs before you are given clearance to fly home to exclude a deep vein thrombosis.

The information detailed above is highly important to follow, however may not be addressed or considered when talking to health professionals who are not Phlebologists or vascular surgeons.

We expect your total stay in Australia to be just over 4 weeks.

Your long haul flight needs to be completed 2 weeks before surgery to allow the blood clotting tendencies of a long haul flight to settle.  You can, however, use this time period between arriving internationally and having your surgery to travel within the east coast of Australia if you desire.  We recommend this, our country is beautiful! : )

You will be required to arrive on the Gold Coast 1-2 days prior to surgery, so that we can provide a scan of your legs to exclude any blood clots pre-surgery.

After the lipo-extraction procedure, you must:

  • spend 1 night overnight stay at Miami Private Hospital
  • spend nights 2-8 staying locally to the hospital (within a 10 – 15 minute drive).  Our team will do another scan on approximately day 5 to exclude a deep vein thrombosis.
  • spend nights 9-15 gently exploring the greater Gold Coast or Brisbane regions before flying home.

You must stay within 10-15 minutes of Miami Private Hospital, which includes suburbs such as Miami, Mermaid Beach, Mermaid Waters, Burleigh Heads, Burleigh Waters, Broadbeach, Broadbeach Waters, Varsity Lakes or Robina.

You can find accommodation suitable for your needs on websites such as http://www.airbnb.com.au or www.booking.com.

Aside from receiving your doctors mobile number for emergencies day or night, our caring and professional clinic team is also ready to assist with any questions or concerns you may have, even after your flight home.

Progress monitoring will include ultrasound scans to detect DVTs and manage seromas, as well as our nurses, working alongside our doctor team, who will perform blood testing to monitor recovery and to complete travel clearance forms.

Please refer to the online support register on our website for practitioners who understand Lipoedema and treat Lipoedema patients, including with conservative management. You can view the list here.

The surgery takes place at our purpose-built facility Miami Private Hospital, which has been fully licensed by Queensland Health, who is known for providing some of the best quality health services in the world.

At Miami Private Hospital, we are focused on providing the highest quality patient care through specialised surgical services in a safe, compassionate and professional environment.

Most other medical practices that treat lipoedema won’t have their own dedicated licensed hospital facilities and will instead be an outpatient clinic, hybrid setup, or perform surgery in a general hospital.

To become licensed by Queensland Health as a private hospital, we have management plans that satisfy the strict criteria such as:

  • Medical emergencies
  • Patient admission criteria
  • Patient consent procedures
  • Patient complaint procedures
  • Infection control policies
  • Infection Control committee
  • Medication management plans
  • Quality policies
  • Storage and collection of waste, including contaminated waste policies
  • Risk management plans
  • Proposed staff roster for each clinical area
  • Staff orientation programs
  • Name of quality assurance entity, date of registration and proposed date of initial certification
  • Data and cyber security
  • Medical Advisory Committee for credentialing doctors approved to operate

For a full list of requirements for private health facilities, please click here.

The closest international airports are:

While the Gold Coast has reliable public transport from which you can reach the hospital and clinic, there are many areas that require a car to access.  If you require additional follow up with our team post surgery you may prefer to travel in the privacy of your own vehicle.

There are car hire services from both the Brisbane Airport and Gold Coast Airport, however you may be able to find more cost efficient car hire outlets outside of the airports. You may like to find a suitable one via Google Maps.

You can also apply for an international driving permit through this website which will be valid for one year – please note that rules for applying may be different depending on your country.

There are also reliable services such as the Brisbane Airtrain and the Gold Coast Airport bus services which can transport you to the hospital at low cost.

Ride share (such as Uber) and taxi services also operate locally.

Centred beautifully in a goldilocks zone, the Gold Coast perpetually experiences ideal weather. If you wish to rest comfortably during your recovery or do some light exploring, the Gold Coast’s climate will be no challenge to you.

Average temperatures and rainfall each month is listed below – as taken from the Bureau Of Meterology

 

Statistics Average Minimum Temperature (°C)
to
Average maximum temperature (°C)
Average rainfall (mm)
Jan 21.9 – 28.8 137.8
Feb 21.8 – 28.7 190.8
Mar 20.9 – 28.0 158.6
Apr 18.3 – 26.0 119.6
May 15.4 – 23.6 101.3
Jun 13.2 – 21.4 107.3
Jul 12.0 – 21.2 51.2
Aug 12.4 – 22.1 52.4
Sep 14.8 – 24.0 44.1
Oct 17.0 – 25.4 91.1
Nov 19.0 – 26.8 108.5
Dec 20.6 – 28.0 140.4

Australian Dollar (AUD) and you can view the current exchange rate at www.xe.com. Visa, Mastercard and eftpos are widely accepted.

The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) works with 15 national boards to provide ongoing regulation to Australia’s health practitioners. Our practitioners are licensed by the Australian Medical Council.

After becoming licensed, all Australian medical practitioners must undergo Continuing Professional Development which is relevant in their field of practice. This ensures that a nationwide standard of knowledge, skills, and performance is continuously advanced through AHPRA approved educational providers.

AHPRA also contains a strict set of codes and guidelines which clarifies the boundaries and repercussions for a range of issues. If you’d like to see the full list of policies click here.

It is important to know that the Australian Medical Council does not allow doctors to use testimonials – we recommend you consider looking at third party reviews instead, such as those available on Google Reviews.

As the World Health Organisation has only recognised the disease in 2018, many countries are still lagging to officially acknowledge lipoedema. Even in first world countries awareness can be poor among GPs and specialists, causing some patients to educate their own medical practitioners.

The best thing you can do as a patient is talk to your preferred physician and spread lipoedema awareness.

Dr Lekich and the team are doing everything they can to advocate for lipoedema recognition in Australia and have been steadily seeing results through educational efforts.