An Overview of Breast Fat Necrosis
Fat necrosis is a benign (noncancerous) condition that occurs when fatty tissue in the breast is damaged by injury, surgery, or radiation therapy. These lumps can occur at any age and appear anywhere in the breast.
Fat necrosis can be difficult to diagnose because it looks and feels like many other types of breast lumps, including a malignant breast tumor. Fat necrosis is more common in women who have had breast cancer surgery and are also receiving adjuvant chemotherapy.
How long does fat necrosis last?
Doctors call these lumps fat necrosis, and they usually don’t show up until 6-8 months after surgery, when the tissue flap has softened and the swelling has gone. Smaller areas of fat necrosis may shrink or go away on their own.
Does fat necrosis go away on its own?
Fat necrosis and oil cysts are usually not treated because they go away on their own. A needle aspiration to remove the fluid from an oil cyst can also be used as a treatment. If the lump or lumpy area grows larger or becomes bothersome, surgery may be required.
Do fat necrosis lumps grow?
The size of the area of breast fat necrosis may increase, decrease, or remain the same after it appears, and it may persist for years or resolve, leaving behind fibrosis and calcifications visible on a mammogram.
What does fat necrosis look like on ultrasound?
Fat necrosis can appear as cystic or solid masses on sonography, ranging from a solid hypoechoic mass with posterior acoustic shadowing to complex intracystic masses that evolve over time. These features depict the histological evolution of fat necrosis.
How do you treat fat necrosis?
If you have pain, take ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or apply a warm compress to the area. You can also gently massage the area. If the lump becomes too large or bothers you, a doctor can perform surgery to remove it.
How common is breast fat necrosis?
Fat necrosis of the breast is a common pathologic condition that shows up on mammography, ultrasound, and MRI in a variety of ways. Fat necrosis of the breast is estimated to account for 0.6% of all breast lesions, or 2.75% of all breast lesions.
What are the first signs of necrosis?
The following are some of the early signs and symptoms of necrotizing fasciitis:
- A red, warm, or swollen area of skin that spreads rapidly.
- Severe pain, including pain that extends beyond the red, warm, or swollen area of skin.
How does necrosis start?
Apoptosis, on the other hand, is a naturally occurring programmed and targeted cause of cellular death, whereas necrosis is caused by factors external to the cell or tissue, such as infection or trauma, which result in the unregulated digestion of cell components.
How long does necrosis take to heal?
Depending on the extent of the skin necrosis, it may heal in one to two weeks, while more extensive areas may take up to six weeks to heal. Fortunately, most people who have skin-flap necrosis after a face-lift heal without complications, and the scar is usually quite faint.
Does fat transfer cause lumps?
Complications such as fat necrosis, oil cysts, and calcifications resulting in hard masses or lumps in the breasts have increased as the number of fat grafting surgeries performed has increased.
Does fat necrosis show up on ultrasound?
Increased echogenicity of the subcutaneous tissues is the most common presentation for fat necrosis on sonography, and hyperechoic masses are almost always benign . Although sonography may not always lead to a precise diagnosis of fat necrosis, it plays an important role in ruling out malignancy.
What causes fat necrosis in the abdomen?
Torsion of an epiploic appendage, infarction of the greater omentum, and fat necrosis due to trauma or pancreatitis are all common processes in fat necrosis.
How do you deal with necrosis?
This method, which uses the wound’s own fluid to break down necrotic tissue, can be accomplished using dressings that add or donate moisture. Semi-occlusive or occlusive dressings are primarily used, but various gel formulations can also be used to help speed the breaking down of necrotic tissue.
How long after breast surgery can fat necrosis occur?
 Timing is crucial in the evaluation of these patients because local recurrence of malignancy occurs most frequently in the first 1 to 5 years after surgery, whereas most changes in fat necrosis occur within weeks to months.
When does necrosis occur?
Necrosis occurs when there is insufficient blood flow to the tissue, which can be caused by injury, radiation, or chemicals. It is irreversible. Gangrene occurs when large areas of tissue die due to a lack of blood supply.