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In this video Dr. Timothy Jochen demonstrates the surgical excision of a small-to-medium sized subcutaneous lipoma – a benign tumor of adipose (fat) tissue. It is not fully understood why lipomas form, but they can occur within almost every organ and are almost never harmful. They can, however, become cosmetically concerning and may be removed by surgical excision. A small incision is made in the skin above the lipoma at which point the growth’s fatty tissue can be seen protruding through the opening. Tissue scissors are then used to separate the thin and fibrous capsule that surrounds the lipoma from the surrounding tissue and the growth is removed.

Other interesting facts about lipomas:

-The exact mechanism behind lipoma formation is unknown but a person is more likely to develop lipomas if their relatives have had lipomas.

-Lipomas may also be removed through liposuction.

-Re-occurrence of lipomas following surgical excision is possible, especially if the fibrous capsule surrounding the tumor is left intact.

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