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eMed previously Babylon Health


Edited by Dr Claudia Pastides, 3rd April 2019

Lipomas are fatty lumps that lie under the skin, commonly found on the back, neck or head. They are soft and can be wiggled from side to side when touching the skin. Some people have more than one lipoma on their body.


  • Genetic factors (if you have a relative with a lipoma, you are more likely to get one too)
  • Trauma (having a knock or injury to an area can sometimes lead to a lipoma forming)

Risk factors

  • Being aged between 40-60
  • Being overweight
  • Having a raised blood sugar level
  • Liver disease
  • Drinking too much alcohol

Typical Symptoms

  • Soft lump that grows slowly over time
  • Can be moved around under the skin
  • Usually painless and rarely causes any symptoms (unless located in or around joints, blood vessels and nerves)

Common Treatment

  • Lipomas rarely cause problems and so are not routinely surgically removed

When to speak to a doctor

If you have a new lump that you aren’t sure about, you can discuss your concerns and show a GP your lump via a digital consultation. If the GP decides you need a face to face appointment, they will discuss what steps you can take next.

To speak to one of our GPs, download the app and create an account today.

It is important to speak urgently to a doctor if you:

  • Have a fast growing lump
  • Have a painful lump
  • Have a red or hot lump

More information


The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Seek the advice of a doctor with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never delay seeking or disregard professional medical advice because of something you have read here.