A lipoma (LY-poe-ma) is a non-cancerous mass of fat cells that grows slowly just under the skin.
Lipomas are soft and doughy to the touch and move easily when lightly pressed upon. Small in size, they are most often found in the arms, thighs, neck, shoulders, back, and abdomen. Lipomas are generally harmless and don't cause pain.
Lipomas can occur at any time. They most often affect adults, but can sometimes be seen in kids and teens.
Most lipomas can be left untreated, but if one is growing larger, becomes infected, causes problems with movement, or is painful, having it removed is an option.
Although a lipoma isn't considered a dangerous medical condition, unusual lumps should always be checked by a doctor to rule out anything more serious.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.
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