NHS website

Lipoma

Lipomas are soft, fatty lumps that grow under your skin. They're harmless and don't usually need any treatment.

22 March 2018

Introduction

Lipomas are soft, fatty lumps that grow under your skin. They're harmless and don't usually need any treatment.

Check if you have a lipoma

Lipomas are common. They:

  • feel soft and squishy
  • can be anything from the size of a pea to a few centimetres across
  • may move slightly under your skin if you press them
  • aren't usually painful
  • often appear on your shoulders, chest, arms, back, bottom or thighs
  • grow slowly

See a GP if:

  • you get a lump anywhere on your body
  • your lump is painful, red or hot
  • your lump is hard and doesn't move

Your GP will usually be able to tell if the lump is a lipoma. If there is any doubt, they may refer you for a scan to check it out.

In rare cases lumps under your skin can be a sign of something more serious.

Getting a lipoma removed

Lipomas are harmless. They are not usually treated on the NHS.

You can pay a private clinic to remove a lipoma but it may be expensive. Your GP can give you advice about where to get treatment.