Lipoma

July 12, 20130 Comments

Lipoma is a condition marked by the presence of fat lumps between the skin and the muscle. It is largely found on the neck, torso, upper thigh region and armpits. Lipomas occur either as single lump or in group or clusters. It is harmless and non-cancerous cells and only tissue growth of fat cells. It can be identified easily by giving gentle pressure on the skin on the lump area. It develops on any age but largely found on middle aged people. No treatment is required for lipoma but for cosmetic purpose it can be removed.

Causes :

Exact cause or factor that causes lipoma is not known but it is believed to be on the genes by birth. Sometimes even small injury can trigger the formation of fat cells under the skin.

Symptoms :

Lipoma or fatty skin are small lump like structure felt below the skin, measuring anywhere from 1-4cm. It will not cause any pain and can be felt by applying gentle pressure by fingers. It is movable and doughy to touch and very rarely it causes pain. It does not grow bigger and will remain the same size often.

Types :

Lipoma is categorized based on its appearance and shape when viewed through the microscope. Normally all lipomas are made of up of fatty cells of skin.

  • Conventional lipoma is the most common type marked by white fat cells under the skin.
  • Hibernoma is marked by brown colored fatty cells instead of white fat cells.
  • Fibrolipoma is marked by the presence of fibrous tissue with fat cells.
  • Angiolipoma type has excess of blood vessels in addition to fatty cells.
  • Myelolipoma type has tissue cells apart from fat cells.
  • Spindle type lipoma has rod shaped fat cells.
  • Pleomorphic lipoma is one that has fatty cells of different shapes.
  • Atypical lipoma is one that has deep layer of fat cells large in number.

Who are at risk ?

Middle aged people and old aged individuals and people with autoimmune disorder or chronic problems like Cowden syndrome, Madelung disease have increased risk of getting lipomas.

Diagnoses :

Lipoma can be easily detected by physical examination of the lump or fatty cells under the skin. Your doctor will remove a small portion of lipoma for testing in the laboratory to ensure that it is not cancer causing cells.

Images, Pics, Photos and Pictures of Lipoma :

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Treatment :

No treatment is required for lipoma since they are harmless and benign in nature. But the lipoma cells can be removed if it grows larger in size and gives ugly appearance. Sometimes it can cause pain and develop swelling due to pus filled liquid.

Lipomas can be removed easily in the outpatient unit or in the office of your doctor. He would give a shot of local anesthesia to create numbness on the affected area and makes an incision to remove the extra growth. Further sutures are made to close the incision. This is the process done during surgical removal of lipoma.

Steroid injection can also be used for shrinking the fatty cells under the skin. Some doctors use liposuction method using a needle or syringe to remove the lumps. It does not recur after removal except in rare cases.

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