Indian Journal of Plastic Surgery
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Year : 2008  |  Volume : 41  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 97-98

Giant fibrolipoma mimicking abdominal lipodystrophy

1 Department of Plastic Surgery, Medical Faculty, Sütcü Imam Üniversity, Kahramanmaras, Turkey
2 Department of Obstetric and Gynecology, Medical Faculty, Sütcü Imam Üniversity, Kahramanmaras, Turkey

Correspondence Address:
Yusuf Kenan Coban
Department of Plastic Surgery, Medical Faculty, Sütcü Imam Üniversity, Kahramanmaras
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0970-0358.41127

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How to cite this article:
Coban YK, Coskun A. Giant fibrolipoma mimicking abdominal lipodystrophy. Indian J Plast Surg 2008;41:97-8

How to cite this URL:
Coban YK, Coskun A. Giant fibrolipoma mimicking abdominal lipodystrophy. Indian J Plast Surg [serial online] 2008 [cited 2018 Jun 21];41:97-8. Available from:

Dear Sir,

Fibrolipomas belong to the family of fat-containing lesions and are benign tumor variants of lipomas characterized by the presence of adipose tissue and abundant amounts of fibrous tissues. They are well-separated from the surrounding tissues and usually occur in adults. [1] These lesions may have a broad base or may be pedinculated. [2],[3] Fibrolipomas are one of the giant lipomatous tumors (defined as being greater than 5 cm in diameter), which have been reported to be seen in the esophagus, intestinal mesentery, pancreas and the parapharyngeal region. [4],[5],[6],[7] Owing to the peculiarity of this condition and the difficulties encountered in its diagnosis and treatment, we report here a case of a giant fibrolipoma in the abdomen.

A 62-year-old female presented with a giant mass in the abdominal wall [Figure 1]. The first visual impression resembled a flask abdomen with severe lipodystrophy. Pre-operative evaluation using ultrasonography showed a very large subcutaneous mass with intact anterior abdominal integrity except for a moderate rectus muscle diastasis. Clinical examination revealed that the mass was strictly attached to the abdominal wall with a wide pedicle and there was no tenderness over it. The patient's main complaint was cosmetic. The patient had intermittent cardiac failure and had been undergoing treatment for five years; otherwise, there was no associated medical problem. The mass of 12 × 10 × 3 cm was excised under general anesthesia [Figure 1]. The surgical approach consisted of excising the mass with a transverse low abdominoplasty incision. No rectus plication or undermining was done. There was no wound healing problem in the postoperative period. The microscopic evaluation of the mass (weighing 1517 g) revealed an admixture of mature adipocytes and fibrous connective tissue [Figure 2]. Pathological examinations revealed that the tumor was composed of spindle cell-like fibroblasts and mature adipocytes. Immunohistochemical examinations revealed that the tumor was negative for desmin and alpha-smooth muscle actin. Based on these findings, a diagnosis of fibrolipoma was made. One year after the surgery, both the local and the general condition of the patient were good and there were no signs of recurrence [Figure 3]. Incidentally another interesting clinical finding was also noted; the clinical cardiac symptoms also improved after the surgery.

Neural fibrolipoma is a benign tumor comprised of hypertrophied, fibrofatty tissue with intermixed nerve tissue and fibrolipomatous hamartoma of the nerve usually seen in infants and children. [8] Although these lesions are often asymptomatic, they may cause discomfort when they become large. As far as our literature review goes, there are no similar reports for fibrolipomas such as the one presented here. The main feature of this fibrolipoma is its resemblance of abdominal lipodystrophy. A subcutaneous fibrolipoma has been described by Kajihara et al . in the back region. [9] For a lipoma to be referred to as "giant", the lesion should be at least 10 cm in diameter or weigh a minimum of 1000 g. These criteria were also met in this case, so the lesion may also be called a giant fibrolipoma. It is not clear as to what mechanisms, excluding trauma, trigger these giant fibrolipomas and the differences of these lesions from other types of lipomas are only based on histopathologic findings. [10] In the future, cellular and subcellular research will perhaps determine physiopathologic mechanisms underlying the progress of such lipoma-like lesions.

 » References Top

1.Janas A, Grzesiak-Janas G. The rare occurence of fibrolipomas. Otolaryngol Pol 2005;59:895-8.  Back to cited text no. 1  [PUBMED]  
2.Grakom GS, Brannon RB, Houston GD. Fibrolipoma of the gingiva: A case report. J Periodontol 1988;59:118-20.  Back to cited text no. 2    
3.Migliore M, Veyasingham K. Pedunculated intraluminal esophegeal fibrolipoma: A case report. J Cardiovascular Surg (Torino) 1998; 39:519-21.  Back to cited text no. 3    
4.Oliveros-Chaparro C, Bogarin-Rodriguez J, Sanchez-Mendez M. Giant fibrolipoma of the floor of the mouth: Presentation of a clinical case. Invest Clin 2001;42:147-52.  Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Vashenko AE, Polinkewich BS, Grishuk IA. Giant fibrolipoma of the small intestinal mesentery. Klin Khir 1992;2:71.  Back to cited text no. 5    
6.Perez B, Campos ME, Rivero J, Lopez-Aguado D. Giant esophageal fibrolipoma. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 1999;120: 445-6.  Back to cited text no. 6    
7.Lazar C, Chifan M, Tircoveanu E, Cotea E, Florea N, Dobrescu G. Giant pancreatic fibrolipoma: Clinical and therapeutic considerations. Rev Med Chir Soc Med Nat Iasi 1982;86:480,484.  Back to cited text no. 7    
8.Karacal N, Ambarcoglu D, Kutlu N. Neural Fibrolipoma of the foot. 2004;114:1985.  Back to cited text no. 8    
9.Kajihara M, Suqawara Y, Sakayama K, Abe Y, Miki H, Mochizuki T. Subcutaneous fibrolipoma in the back. Radiat Med 2006;24:520-4.  Back to cited text no. 9    
10.Coban YK, Uzel M, Gumus N. Lipoma due to chronic intermittant compression as an occupational disease. Ann Plast Surg 2006;57:275-8.  Back to cited text no. 10  [PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]

This article has been cited by
1 Fibrolipoma of the Floor of the Mouth - Report of a Rare Case and Review of the Literature
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International Journal of Oral-Medical Sciences. 2013; 11(4): 320
[Pubmed] | [DOI]


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