What is a Lipoma?

Lipomas are benign tumors that form in the subcutaneous fat layer. They are soft, round masses that feel like a small, hard pea under the skin. Lipomas can range in size from a few millimeters to more than 10 centimeters in diameter. They can grow anywhere on the body, but are most common in the upper arms and legs. Lipomas can also appear on other parts of the body such as:

Under the breast or around nipples
Behind your ears or in your neck area
In front of your shoulders or upper back (trapezius muscle)
Near your waistline or pelvic area

Causes of Lipoma

Lipomas usually occur due to genetics or age-related changes in your body’s metabolism rate; however, they can also be caused by obesity or weight gain over time (particularly if you have diabetes). If you notice that a new one has appeared recently (within 1 year), then it may be due to an injury or trauma done during an automobile accident that damaged internal organs such as kidneys or liver (which could also cause bleeding)

Lipoma Symptoms

Lipomas are generally painless, but they can cause irritation when they press against nerves or other structures.

Lipoma symptoms include:

Pain (usually mild to moderate)
Painless lumps or bumps under the skin
Tenderness or soreness around a lump or bump
A change in the way your skin feels (including thickening or thinning)
Changes in the appearance of a lump or bump (such as changing shape)

How are Lipomas diagnosed?

Lipomas are not cancerous and do not spread to other parts of the body. They can be removed if they cause discomfort or interfere with normal activities. It is important that we take the time to make sure that you have a lipoma as opposed to another type of tumor or cancer. Our providers usually diagnose a lipoma during physical examination. In some cases there might be a need for a biopsy to confirm that the lipoma is not cancerous. During this procedure a small sample of the mass will be sent to a lab by the provider for testing.

Treatment options

Most lipomas do not need a treatment, but if you have been diagnosed with a lipoma that is bothering you, there are several ways to treat it:

Excision: The surgeon removes the entire tumor by cutting it out using local anesthesia and stitches to close the wound after surgery is completed (this is called an excision procedure). The removal process is painless, safe and effective. The patient usually goes home the same day after the procedure is done.
Liposuction: As an alternative to surgery, your provider might recommend liposuction which is most beneficial if you want to avoid scarring.

Schedule An Appointment Today

If you’re interested in learning more about Lipoma please contact us for a consultation at 832-699-8342 or fill out our contact us form. We will discuss your needs and concerns, and determine your best course of action.