Types of Lipomas | Minnesota

Lipoma is a benign fatty tumor that is typically not medically dangerous, but it could be quite painful and in most cases unsightly. There’s a very small chance that a lump resembling a lipoma may actually be a form of cancer called liposarcoma. Liposarcomas grow rapidly, and are usually painful.

lipomaLipomas usually form in the soft tissues under body surface. These include neck, breast, forehead, back, abdominal, arm, thigh. Lipomas can also form internally although they are much more rare, but can offer greater risk of serious complications.

While all lipomas are made up of fat, there are sub-types in the pathological perspective. Some varieties include:

  • Conventional lipoma (common, mature white fat)
  • Hibernoma (brown fat instead of the usual white fat)
  • Fibrolipoma (fat plus fibrous tissue)
  • Angiolipoma (fat plus a large amount of blood vessels)
  • Myelolipoma (fat plus tissue that makes blood cells)
  • Spindle cell lipoma (fat with cells that look like rods)
  • Pleomorphic lipoma (fat with cells of all different shapes and sizes)
  • Atypical lipoma (deeper fat with a larger number of cells)
  • Special Types of Lipomas

    • Lipomatosis is a hereditary condition in which multiple lipomas are present on the body.
    • Adiposis dolorosa (Dercum disease) is a rare medical condition involving multiple painful lipomas, swelling, and fatigue.
    • Benign symmetric lipomatosis (Madelung disease) is another condition involving lipomatosis. It nearly always appears in middle-aged males after many years of alcoholism. But, non-alcoholics and females can also be affected.

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