A lipoma is a benign (non cancer) tumor made up of fat tissue. Lipomas can form anywhere in your body, but are usually found on the back, shoulders, neck, and head. The cause of lipomas is unknown. Some types of lipomas may run in families. They most often appear between age 40 and 60.

What are the signs and symptoms of a lipoma?

A lipoma looks like a round lump of tissue. It may feel soft and rubbery. Lipomas move around underneath your skin when you press on them. They usually do not hurt. If your lipoma grows large, it may cause pain.

How is a lipoma diagnosed?

Your healthcare provider will examine your lipoma. Tell him or her how long you have had the lipoma, and any other symptoms you have. He or she may take a sample of tissue and send it to a lab for tests. This procedure is called a biopsy.

How is a lipoma treated?

You may not need any treatment if the lipoma does not bother you. Your healthcare provider may recommend regular follow-up visits to check the lipoma for changes. Injections may help shrink your lipoma. You may need surgery to remove the lipoma if it is large, painful, or causes other symptoms.

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

  • Your lipoma is getting bigger.
  • Your lipoma causes new or increased pain.
  • You develop new symptoms.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.