ⓘ Lipohypertrophy


ⓘ Lipohypertrophy

Lipohypertrophy is a lump under the skin caused by accumulation of extra fat at the site of many subcutaneous injections of insulin. It may be unsightly, mildly painful, and may change the timing or completeness of insulin action. It is a common, minor, chronic complication of diabetes mellitus.

Typical injection site hypertrophy is several inches or cm across, slightly rounded, and somewhat firmer than ordinary subcutaneous fat. There may be some scar tissue, but the major component is adipose tissue, as insulin exerts a hypertrophic effect on adipose cells. To avoid lipohypertrophy, people with diabetes to inject insulin daily over a long period of time, it is recommended to rotate their injection in several places. Rotation maps are often provided through education of diabetes, to help prevent lipohypertrophy.

Lipohypertrophy usually will gradually disappear over months if injections in the area.

It is a common misconception that cones are largely scar tissue, as injection site hypertrophy is much rarer and milder with injections of other hormones and drugs that have certain ability of insulin to stimulate adipose hypertrophy.

In a sense the "reverse" lipohypertrophy of the injection site lipodystrophy at the injection site where the subcutaneous fat around the injected region "melts" within a few weeks or months, leaving unsightly, well-demarcated depressions in the skin. The mechanism of this local lipoatrophy dont understand and can include autoimmune disease or local inflammation.

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