Lipomas are benign growths, or fatty tumors, that usually develop just beneath the skin and appear as skin lumps. They are the most common noncancerous growths of soft tissue, and often appear in the upper thighs, upper arms, torso, neck and armpits, although they can occur almost anywhere. There are many different fatty tumors causes and symptoms, as they can develop as a result of various factors.
You don’t have to live with these benign growths. While most fatty tumors do not necessitate surgical removal or any other treatment options, there are certain cases in which removal is needed or desired by the patient. You can speak with a specialist at the world-renowned Lipoma Removal Center of Excellence in Los Angeles today to learn more.
What Causes Lipomas?
The causes for lipomas are not completely understood, but there are many factors that can contribute to the formation of these fatty tumors.
The most common fatty tumors cause is an inherited genetic mutation or hereditary propensity for the development of these benign growths. Another major cause is an injury that triggers the fat cells to form a skin lump or fatty tumor.
It is important to note that the majority of these benign growths do not require any treatment, however patients often choose to have them removed for cosmetic or comfort reasons. Upon examination, a specialist can determine the specific cause of your fatty tumors and advise you about removal.
Most fatty tumors do not cause pain, and typically are about .4 to 1.2 inches in diameter. They are soft and movable, and have a rubbery consistency, and either grow slowly or remain the same size for years. These types of lipomas do not usually need to be removed, unless it is for cosmetic reasons. However, if you experience any of the following symptoms, you should seek advice from a lipoma expert right away:
- It is painful or tender to the touch
- It has increased in size in a short period of time, or suddenly after a long period of little to no growth
- It has become inflamed or infected
- Foul-smelling discharge is coming from the fatty tumor
- It makes movement or function difficult
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What causes fatty tumors or lipomas?
A: While it is not known what causes each type of lipoma, the condition tends to be hereditary, and patients with a family history of fatty tumors may be more susceptible to the growths. Additionally, an injury may play a role in causing a fatty tumors to develop.
Q: Does being overweight cause these growths?
A: No. Contrary to popular belief, lipomas are not thought to develop as a result of being overweight. They are most often hereditary, or caused by an injury.
Q: How are they treated?
A: Most often, a lipoma doctor will treat a it by removing it completely through a surgical procedure. The removal of the entire benign growth helps to ensure the fatty tumor does not reform later. Because it is a minimally invasive procedure, lipoma removal can be done on an outpatient basis, and patients can go home the same day as their surgery.
Q: When would I need to have my lipoma removed?
A: Fatty tumors usually do not need to be removed, but some patients find that the appearance of a fatty tumor is unsightly and may wish to have it removed for aesthetic purposes. Additionally, if the fatty tumor is painful, uncomfortable, or producing a discharge or foul odor, removing the fatty tumor may be necessary.
Contact a Los Angeles Lipoma Doctor
The causes of skin lumps depend on each patient’s unique medical history, so it is important to consult with a specialist about your fatty tumors when it first develops. To schedule a consultation with a world-renowned surgeon at the Lipoma Removal Center of Excellence, please contact our outpatient surgery center.
You can reach our office by calling (888) 316-9905, or by filling out our online contact form.
Please read this article from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons for more information.
Next, read about lipoma pain.