Lipomas are found below the skin within the subcutaneous fat. They are soft and made of fatty tissue. They can vary greatly in size. The majority are relatively small and only a few centimeters across. However, they can be quite large and deep, attached to underlying muscle. In these cases, they can cause pain alongside restricted movements. Lipomas are normally benign (non-cancerous) lesions.
What do they look like?
Lipomas are smooth, circular lumps under the skin with no overlying skin changes. They are mostly found over the chest, back, shoulders and neck. On the face they often occur on the forehead. They are often slightly mobile and painless.
Can they be removed?
Most lipomas are relatively easy to remove under local anaesthetic. The removal of lipomas is often considered a cosmetic procedure and with the current restraints are not treated on the NHS. Only rarely when the lipomas are large and deep can it be difficult to get them removed.
Lipomas are normally surgically removed through a small incision over the skin. In most cases this can be performed under local anaesthetic. Only when the lipomas are very large and extending deep is a general anaesthesia (getting put to sleep) required.
The gold standard for removing lipomas is excision (cutting out). Following the administration of some local anaesthetic a small incision is made over the lump. The lipoma is identified within the subcutaneous fat. It is then freed from the surrounding tissue and pulled to the surface. The stalk of the lipoma is identified and cauterised to ensure there is no bleeding. The stalk is then cut and the lipoma removed completely. Any remaining defect in the fatty tissue is washed and any surrounding bleeding cauterised. Finally the incision is closed with stitches.
There will be a small scar over the incision site. This scar normally extends to the diameter of the lipoma at most. Often a smaller incision is possible and hence a smaller scar. This scar normally heals well and an excellent cosmetic result can be achieved. When the lipoma is located specifically over the shoulders, chest or back, there can be a risk of developing keloids. The risk of keloids is especially significant in Asian and Afro-Carribean skin types (FitzPatrick Skin Types IV to VI). At your initial consultation, we will discuss the likelihood of keloid formation. Any resultant keloids can be treated to reduce them in size. Further information on keloids and their treatment is available in the keloid section.
It is rare for lipomas to return once they have been excised.
Mr Irfan Halim
MBBS MSc FRCS GDipLaw DIC MBA
All minor surgery services at Rejuvence Medical are provided by Mr. Irfan Halim. Mr Halim is a Consultant General Surgeon. He has a specialist interest in gastrointestinal and laparoscopic surgery as well as endoscopy.
Qualified from Guy’s and St.Thomas’ Medical School with Distinction, Mr Halim subsequently trained in General Surgery sub specialising in Laparoscopic Gastrointestinal Surgery. He is blessed with fantastic surgical skills and always strives for the best possible outcomes. Mr Halim provides a bespoke treatment package for all his patients.
Mr Halim is extremely well sought after, practising at several highly prestigious private establishments including BMI The London Independent Hospital, The Blackheath Hospital, BMI Hendon Hospitals as well as Highgate Hospital. He performs a large number of cases, seeing 300 new patients a month and performs on average more than 1200 procedures per year. His outcomes are excellent and regularly audits his work. Friends and family as well as colleagues always favour Mr Halim over others. We are so pleased to have him as part of the team at Rejuvence Medical. You really could not be in better hands.
Lipoma Treatment at Rejuvence Medical
At Rejuvence Medical, we are experienced in the treatment and removal of lipomas. We are able to achieve excellent cosmetic results. Please book a consultation for further information.