Lipomas / Ganglion Treatment
Plastic surgeons can also provide treatment for lipomas and ganglions, which are both common benign growths that can occur in various parts of the body.
A lipoma is a noncancerous growth of fatty tissue that forms beneath the skin. It usually feels soft and can be easily moved when touched. Lipomas can occur anywhere on the body where fat cells are present, but they are most commonly found on the back, neck, shoulders, arms, and thighs.
A ganglion is a benign cyst or sac filled with a gel-like fluid that usually forms near joints or tendons, most commonly in the wrist or hand. It appears as a lump or bump and can vary in size. Ganglions can also develop in other areas, such as the ankle or foot.
Why do people have lipomas removed?
Lumps and bumps will not go away on their own.
If the blemish bothers you in some way – if it is unsightly, painful or growing in a worrying way then your doctor may recommend that it be removed.
There is also a small risk that the lipoma is in fact a sign of something more serious. It is worth removing if your dermatologist has any concerns about it, such as if it is painful, red or hot, or is hard and does not move.
Once a lipoma has been removed surgically, recurrences are uncommon.
Where are Lipomas most commonly found?
Lipomas are most commonly found on the arms, shoulders, upper back, chest, thighs and buttocks. However, lipomas can be found anywhere where fat cells are present.
Lipomas are most common in middle-aged men and women. These benign tumors have a slight tendency to run in families, so, if there are one or more people in your family with a lipoma, your chances of developing one increase significantly.
How does Lipoma removal work?
Lipoma removal is generally performed under local anaesthetic. In the rare instances where a lipoma is very large or deep, you may require a general anaesthetic, which will keep you asleep and free from pain throughout the entire surgery.
Either way, the procedure will be very quick and you will not feel a thing.
The surgeon will apply a local anesthetic, make an incision into your skin and cut out the lump. It may be sent to a lab and tested for any signs of pathology, such as cancer. We will then use stitches or medical glue to close the skin, and a bandage applied to prevent bleeding.
How are lipomas and ganglions treated?
The treatment approach for lipomas and ganglions may vary depending on the size, location, symptoms, and patient preferences. In some cases, if the lipoma or ganglion is small, asymptomatic, and not causing any functional problems, no treatment may be necessary. However, if the growth is causing discomfort, pain, or cosmetic concerns, surgical removal may be recommended. The surgeon will make an incision, remove the lipoma or ganglion, and close the incision with sutures.
Is surgery the only option for treating lipomas and ganglions?
In some cases, non-surgical treatment options may be explored, especially for ganglions. These can include aspiration, where the fluid is drawn out with a needle, or the use of splints or braces to immobilize the joint and reduce pressure on the ganglion. However, it’s important to note that non-surgical treatments may not provide a permanent solution and the growth may recur.
Lipomas / Ganglion Treatment – Frequently Asked Questions
The recovery period after the surgical removal of lipomas or ganglions is usually relatively quick. It may involve some mild discomfort, swelling, and bruising in the treated area. The surgeon will provide instructions on wound care, pain management, and any necessary activity restrictions during the healing process. Most patients can resume their regular activities within a few days to a week after the procedure.
As with any surgical procedure, there are potential risks and complications associated with the removal of lipomas or ganglions. These can include infection, bleeding, scarring, nerve injury, recurrence of the growth, and cosmetic irregularities. It’s important to discuss the potential risks with your plastic surgeon and follow all pre- and post-operative instructions to minimize the chances of complications.
Yes, a plastic surgeon is trained in the removal and treatment of various skin and soft tissue conditions, including lipomas and ganglions. They can assess the growth, determine the appropriate treatment approach, and perform surgical procedures if necessary.
Lipomas are soft, fatty accumulations that tend to form just beneath the surface of the skin in middle age and the cause is often hereditary. Our genes, which are passed down to us from our parents and generations before them, tend to determine everything about our physical appearance and development. Sometimes the genetic code contains faults that can result in minor imperfections or hindrances that we barely notice, and sometimes the conditions can be more severe. Lipomas can be caused by such genetic flaws, but they are nothing to worry about.
Lipomas are generally not painful and grow slowly. Some will stay the same size for many years. Most patients only feel uncomfortable about them when they become noticeable after many years. In rare instances, lipomas may develop deep inside the body and may cause symptoms when they press against blood vessels, nerves, or organs.
Surgery is the only effective way to remove lipomas. There are various home remedies for reducing lipomas, but these are not recommended by the Delight Clinic as there is no research to prove that they work effectively.
Lipomas may recur if not completely removed. Even with excision, it is easy to leave a lobule behind. Where people have multiple lipomas, it may just be a new one appearing.