No treatment is usually necessary for a lipoma. However, if the lipoma bothers you, is painful or is growing, your doctor might recommend that it be removed. Lipoma treatments include:
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Surgical removal. Most lipomas are removed surgically by cutting them out. Recurrences after removal are uncommon. Possible side effects are scarring and bruising.
A technique known as minimal excision extraction may result in less scarring.
- Steroid injections. This treatment shrinks the lipoma but usually doesn't eliminate it. The use of injections before surgical removal is being studied.
- Liposuction. This treatment uses a needle and a large syringe to remove the fatty lump.
- Goldstein BG, et al. Overview of benign lesions of the skin. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 4, 2014.
- Lipoma. American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00631. Accessed Nov. 4, 2014.
- Goldsmith LA, et al., eds. Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://accessmedicine.mhmedical.com/book.aspx?bookid=392. Accessed Nov. 4, 2014.
- Wolff K, et al. Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas and Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology. 7th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2013. http://accessmedicine.mhmedical.com/book.aspx?bookId=682. Accessed Nov. 4, 2014.
- Cosulich MT, et al. Minimal excision extraction of lipomas. JAMA Dermatology. 2014;150:1360.
- Amber KT, et al. Injection therapy for the management of superficial subcutaneous lipomas. The Journal of Clinical Aesthetic Dermatology. 2014;7:46.