We are so accustomed to how our body looks and feels that even the smallest change or difference does not go unnoticed. So, when we discover an abnormal growth anywhere on our bodies, our first thought is to worry. But before we jump to conclusions, we should be aware that not all abnormal growths are a source of concern, some growths are not dangerous at all.
Lipomas are small fatty growths that grow just beneath the surface of the skin. They do not cause any pain, can be moved when you touch it, and are made entirely of fats. Lipomas are also known as benign soft tissue tumours which are not cancerous and grow very slowly. While they are not dangerous, they can be inconvenient and unsightly, occurring commonly on the trunk or torso, back, shoulders, arms, forehead, and neck.
Most of the time, lipomas are easy to identify but they can be mistaken for other types of growths or lesions such as sebaceous cysts. However, there are certain identifying characteristics of a growth that classify them as a lipoma, these are:
If you notice a growth with the characteristics above, you may have a lipoma.
The exact cause of lipomas is still unknown and poorly understood, however, there are several factors that have been associated with lipomas, these are:
Lipomas are usually diagnosed using a physical examination; however, additional tests may be required for a more accurate diagnosis, these tests are:
No matter what type of lipoma removal option you choose, you will be able to go home on the same day as the procedure. You will be prescribed some painkillers and possibly some antibiotics (for individuals who chose the surgery option). You will also have a follow-up appointment with your doctor to check on the progress of your healing and to remove the stitches (if necessary). You can resume your normal day to day activities but avoid exercise for one-week post-surgery.
Lipoma removal is minimally invasive with little to no complications. These complications or side effects are: