Following are the common questions about Lipoma:
A. A lipoma is a benign tumor composed of fatty tissues. It can grow on any body part right under the skin. The tissues are soft and rubbery to touch and easily move with the touch of a finger. Around 1 out of 1000 people get a lipoma and this condition can arise in both males and females irrespective of their age.
A. The primary cause of lipoma is not identified. However, it usually occurs due to the following-
A. Lipoma exhibit the following symptoms-
A. There are various types of lipomas and all of them are composed of fat tissues. However, each type has some different characteristics that differentiate it from others. The types are given below-
Although all the above-mentioned types of lipomas are non-cancerous, some of these can cause pain and discomfort.
A. Multiple lipoma syndrome, also known as familial multiple lipomatosis is a rare genetic disorder that is characterized by the formation of multiple fatty lumps on the trunk, arms, or upper leg region. The size and number of lipomas are not fixed. For instance, in some people, hundreds of lumps may be present without any symptoms in a similar location without pain or any other symptom. These lipomas have symmetric growth and if any person in the family has or had lipomas between the age of 30 to 70, the next generation is most likely to develop lipomas as well.
A. Generally, a lipoma is not dangerous. It is a benign growth, i.e., non-cancerous. Therefore, the tissues won’t grow abnormally and pose a threat to your life. In many cases, lipomas even go away on their own without treatment. It is usually not problematic but if you have pain in the lumps and feel discomfort, you should seek help from an expert and get proper treatment.
A. If a lipoma is left untreated for a long time, it will continue growing. The growth happens gradually and there is a possibility that the lump will grow around nerves and blood vessels. For a long time, lipomas won't cause pain but as the lump grows, the fat tissues may start compressing the blood vessels. This can cause pain and discomfort which may be difficult to bear sometimes. This is the usual stage where a person having lipoma decide to visit a doctor.
Besides the pain, leaving lipomas untreated is also not recommended as the treatment of a large-sized lipoma is quite difficult. At this stage, removing a lipoma without damaging the surrounding muscles and tissues is complex. Furthermore, by ignoring a lipoma, you may end up putting your life at risk as a cancerous lump, called liposarcoma, also has similar symptoms. So, even if you don't need to undergo lipoma surgery, it is still important to get diagnosed and identify whether the fatty lump is cancerous or not.
A. Lipoma can be diagnosed by a skin specialist or a plastic surgeon simply with a touch. However, some tests are required to ensure that the lump is not cancerous and to narrow down the treatment option.
All these tests are necessary to check the severity of the condition and to identify the best possible treatment method for lipoma.
A. Lipomas can be treated in the following ways-
While steroid injections require multiple sessions to effectively make the lipoma disappear, other methods remove the lump at once.
A. During lipoma surgery, the patient is taken to the Operation Theater (OT) and the surgery is performed in the following steps-
A. Even though lipoma excision is not a major surgery, it have several risks and complications associated with the procedure. The potential risks are-
Most of these complications arise during the surgery. And if minimally invasive technique is used for the procedure, the risks are further reduced.
A. Lipoma removal surgery cost ranges from Rs. 3500 to Rs. 30,000 approximately. This is an estimated cost and the exact price will vary based on factors like-
When you consult a doctor for lipoma treatment, he/she will breakdown these expenses so that you will have an idea of how much the treatment will cost in your case specifically.
A. If lipoma surgery is being performed for cosmetic reasons, the surgery won’t be covered by insurance. However, if lipoma is symptomatic, i.e., causing pain and other symptoms, the insurance providers may provide claim amount to cover the entire expense of the treatment. You can talk to the insurance provider about the terms and conditions and discuss how much claim can you get for a specific treatment.
A. The recovery period after lipoma surgery vary for each person and depends on the severity of the condition. If there was only one lipoma of normal size and it was removed through excision, the recovery will take around 1 week or so.
At the same time, if there were multiple lipomas with different sizes, and excision technique was used for removal, the recovery period will be around 2-3 weeks. The more serious lipoma surgery is, the longer you will need to recover. Furthermore, your body’s healing abilities will also determine how long will it take for you to get back to your normal routine.
A. There is no prevention method for lipomas as the cause is also not clearly identified. Most of the people who get these fatty lumps have a hereditary condition. As a result, the genes of fatty lumps are passed down to the next generation.
However, in some cases where lipoma develop due to medical conditions like Madelung's disease, the best prevention method is limiting the alcohol intake. It may possibly reduce the chances of getting these benign lumps.
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