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NobleGuy

Original Poster:

7,046 posts

98 months

[news] 
Wednesday 21st November 2012 quote quote all
My 6 year old son has developed a little lump between the bottom of his rib cage and tummy. It's about a centimetre round and after multiple visits to the doctor they finally took a moment to explain that they believe it's a lipoma (harmless fatty lump).

After speaking to my mum about it she mentioned she has one and that the only way they could tell if the lump was dangerous or not was by doing a biopsy. I don't want to put him through anything unnecessary, but I also don't want it to develop quietly while everyone is saying it's not a problem.

Has anyone had experience of these?

GokTweed

3,713 posts

34 months

[news] 
Wednesday 21st November 2012 quote quote all
A malignant tumour isn't well defined and seeing as though your little lads' is rounded and capsular and the fact that it's a lipoma means is most likely to be benign. If you can move it about with your finger and thumb under the skin it's also evidence of a lipoma vs a cyst.

NobleGuy

Original Poster:

7,046 posts

98 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
GokTweed said:
A malignant tumour isn't well defined and seeing as though your little lads' is rounded and capsular and the fact that it's a lipoma means is most likely to be benign. If you can move it about with your finger and thumb under the skin it's also evidence of a lipoma vs a cyst.
Thanks for the information smile
I guess the best course of action is to keep an eye on it and look out for any changes?

N Dentressangle

2,930 posts

105 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
What does the GP think?

NobleGuy

Original Poster:

7,046 posts

98 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
N Dentressangle said:
What does the GP think?
The first time the doctor looked for about 10 seconds, failed to find it and said "It's probably just a fatty lump". The whole appointment took about 30-60 seconds...

We went back a couple of weeks later to a different doctor who took a bit more time to explain what it probably was, and that was the first time I'd heard the term 'lipoma'.

My main concern is that it turns out my mum had one but they actually took a sample and checked it (it was benign like the majority of them) just to be sure.
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N Dentressangle

2,930 posts

105 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
Then I'd probably book another appointment with the GP you got on better with and ask them to explain things properly to you, including the likely biopsy procedure. It sounds like whatever your son has is benign, but it's understandable to be worried. Don't be too spooked by the wiki article defining lipoma as a kind of tumor - they're not in the same league as what you'd think of as actual 'cancer'.

Doctors don't normally like being pinned down, but you could ask something like 'if this were your son, what would you do?' - tends to get them off the fence!

Edited by N Dentressangle on Thursday 22 November 08:55

DrMekon

2,473 posts

99 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
I'm got loads of them - they know what they aren't, but they are only pretty sure they are lipoma. Am I arsed that they can't be definite? No. They are trying to be scientific. Think of their diagnosis as a hypothesis that they are seeking to disconfirm. They won't test hypotheses (diagnostic or treatment) that might result in you being dead before they can falsify them.

FWIW, I have them on my calf, lower back, beside my spine, and next to a kidney. I have single figure body fat, so you can see them pretty easily. Whenever I get a new GP, or a new one comes along, I get them to go over them again. Otherwise, I just keep to the advice not to prod and poke them (it makes them angry). They don't cause me any bother, except the one on the kidney - if anyone tries to tickle or poke me there, I get a bit punchy.

NobleGuy

Original Poster:

7,046 posts

98 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
Cheers, thanks for the replies everyone.

I did actually see that article on Wiki classifying them as a tumour which made me wonder a bit smile

GokTweed

3,713 posts

34 months

[news] 
Thursday 22nd November 2012 quote quote all
NobleGuy said:
Cheers, thanks for the replies everyone.

I did actually see that article on Wiki classifying them as a tumour which made me wonder a bit smile
Tumour is a very broad yet scary term. It basically means any abnormal growth of tissue.

yajeed

3,968 posts

137 months

[news] 
Friday 23rd November 2012 quote quote all
NobleGuy said:
Cheers, thanks for the replies everyone.

I did actually see that article on Wiki classifying them as a tumour which made me wonder a bit smile
I had one on the back of my head. Since it was affecting my sleep my doctor tried to remove it, and took a biopsy.

It didn't hurt and the negative result gave me the comfort of knowing it wasn't any more sinister.

A while later (and after the NHS had refused to remove it), I had it removed privately.


TheFlatSixer

11 posts

46 months

[news] 
Saturday 24th November 2012 quote quote all
NobleGuy

Go back and explain that you are not satisfied with guess work and surmising what it 'may' be and request a biopsy. It is a minor procedure and in this situation you need peace of mind and only a biopsy can give you that.

You're completely right to be concerned, it is your child, not the doctors' and you need to be sure all is ok. Don't be fobbed off again, that's what we pay our contributions for.

Antonia

252 posts

44 months

[news] 
Saturday 24th November 2012 quote quote all
Lipomas are very common, without any features of anything sinister there is no reason to put child of six through an invasive procedure with risks.
I offer my patients an ultra sound if they are unsure about my diagnosis. Then you know what the nature of the lump is (So you can partly blame me for the long waiting times for routine ultra sound studies). But it maybe that you can have the ultra sound at your GP surgery and save time.

bexVN

10,725 posts

94 months

[news] 
Saturday 24th November 2012 quote quote all
Can't they just do a Fine needle aspirate? This is a minor procedure.We do this in animals all the time. We don't need to use local (not sure with a child)

However if we are happy that it has the appearance of a lipoma we usually monitor for a while. Even though benign we will rove them if they are growing esp if sitting in muscle layers or areas of the body with thin tissue coverage.
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