Exercise After Lipoma Removal

Lipomas are fatty tumors that are usually felt underneath your skin. Most lipomas are benign and present no health problems. However, a few lipomas can cause pain, or grow quickly, and would need to be surgically removed.

Range of motion exercises are good after lipoma removal.
Credit: Sergey Mikheev/iStock/GettyImages

In this case, it is important to know what type of recovery process there is, and how it will affect any exercises you may wish to do.

What Are Lipomas?

Lipomas are rare in children and usually appear between the ages of 40 to 60. Lipomas are most commonly found on the trunk and extremities and feel like rubber balls or "dough" underneath the skin. They do not attach to the skin and are freely mobile.

According to Mayo Clinic, most lipomas are less than 2 inches in diameter, but many can get much larger. Lipomas are normally painless, but some can cause pain, especially while growing. This may be due to the lipoma pushing on nerves or if they contain a lot of blood vessels.

Read more: Is Missing a Day of Exercise Bad?

Three Treatment Options

Although doctors can diagnose lipomas by sight and feel sometimes x-rays, CT scans or MRI scans are employed according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Sometimes a biopsy will be performed and in rare cases a lipoma will turn out to be a liposarcoma, or a cancerous fatty tumor.

There are three treatment options for lipomas. Steroid injections can be used and have shown to shrink lipomas up to 75 percent of their original size. Liposuction of the lipoma can also be done using a needle and syringe. However, neither of these options achieves the complete removal of a lipoma and it my grow back according to Cleveland Clinic.

The best option for treatment is the complete excision and removal of a lipoma by surgery. For all treatment options a local anesthetic is employed and the patient goes home the same day.

Exercise After Lipoma Removal

Steroid injections and liposuction of the lipoma both offer quick recovery for the patient and exercises should be well tolerated. Be sure to monitor the location of the lipoma for bleeding or abnormalities. Surgical removal of lipomas may mean you need more rest before exercising that area of the body.

Low activity of the area in question is suggested for several weeks following the surgical removal of a lipoma. Doing range-of-motion exercises in this area is acceptable during this time. Walking on a treadmill or outside is acceptable; but cover the excision site if walking outside. If the lipoma is deep and muscles had to be cut, physical therapy may also be required for proper healing.

Read more: Activities For Flexibility

Recovery Time After Lipoma Surgery

If exercise causes pain, be sure to quit what you are doing and discuss it with your doctor. Your provider may have a specific protocol he would like you to follow after having your lipoma removed. Be sure to follow all instructions given by your doctor to limit the possibility of complications and provide the best recovery.

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