Will Lipodissolve Injections Help Shrink My Lipomas?

Q: I have multiple lipomas along nerves in my arm and am interested in finding out how to get injections to decrease their size. These lipomas give me pain because they are up against my ulnar nerve. I have about 80 lipomas all over my body. I am female, fit, 35, and frustrated with surgeries to remove them.

A: While the benign fatty tumor, known as a lipoma, are common soft tissues masses seen, multiple or many lipomas that recur in a patient is uncommon. When large numbers occur, they are as familial lipomatosis. Throughout one’s life new ones continue to grow and develop. Modern medicine does not have an explanation for why they develop or what causes them.

While I have had positive experiences with Lipodissolve in the treatment of more superficial lipomas, I would have concerns about injecting near a motor nerve. There is the distinct possibility that permanent damage may occur to the nerve, causing forearm and hand dysfunction. That is a risk that would not be a good trade-off.

Lipodissolve remains a non-FDA approved treatment method for any type of fat removal or shrinkage. It is not even a pharmaceutical-grade chemical as it is made through compounding pharmacies. While widely used as a cosmetic treatment for ‘dissolving’ fat, its use as a lipoma injection treatment has never been scientifically evaluated in any clinical trial method although anectodal reports exist that attest to its effectiveness. 

If these ‘lipomas’ in fact do involve or are connected to the nerves, they may well be neuromas or neurofibromas which would not be responsive to fat-dissolving injections anyway.

Dr. Barry Eppley