What is Lipoma?
A lipoma is generally defined as a slow-growing benign mass composed of fat cells. Then are mainly situated between the muscle layer and the skin. They are generally found to occur in middle-aged people and the lipomas can feel different when you touch them. They can be a doughy mass rather than feeling soft and tender. It is usual for them to move slightly with a little bit of finger pressure. People may or may not develop more than one lipoma.
A lipoma is not a cancer . You do not generally require any kind of treatment but if you feel that it is bothering you, then you can visit the doctor. However if the lipoma is painful or growing in size, then you could see the doctor to get it removed.
What are the general symptoms?
- Lipomas can occur at any place on the body and they are located just under the skin. You can get them in the neck, back, on the stomach or arms. They can occur on the thighs too.
- They are generally doughy to touch. You can see that they move aside with the slightest finger pressure.
- These lipomas are small at first, then they keep growing. They are painful if they press on the nearby nerves .
When should you go visit the doctor?
If you find the lipoma to be painful, then you can visit the doctor.
What are the possible causes of Lipoma?
- The cause of lipomas is not fully understood . It can run in families or generations. It can be because of genetic links
- Lipomas can occur at any age. They are most common in the middle-aged group.
Diagnosis of Lipoma
- Physical examination
- Second, there is a tissue sample removal for lab examination. This is also called a biopsy.
- Other than this, you may have an X-ray test or an imaging test like an MRI or CT scan. This is done when the lipoma is large and they have unusual features, or seem more deeper than usual .
- A liposarcoma is a malignant tumour of the fat cells . Biopsy , CT and MRI could help differentiate a benign lipoma from this condition.
Treatment for Lipoma
Removal of lipoma is by a surgical procedure .The only possible side effects for this type of treatment is scarring. However, there are minimal excision extraction procedures nowadays where there is not much scarring.
If you don’t want it to be removed, doctors use a needle and a large syringe to remove the fatty lipoma. They rarely recur again once they are removed.
Hence, to conclude, lipomas are not a serious issue that needs you to be worried. You can live with it without any ill effect . The only way to get rid of them is to remove them surgically when they grow abnormally, or they are painful . Either way, keep your visits to the doctor regular and seek medical advice when in doubt.