Is Removing a Lipoma on the Back of the Head Risky for a 14-year-old?

My daughter was born with a lipoma on the back of her head.... She is now 14 and the bump is about the size of a golf ball. Our new doctor is recommending an MRI and removal of it, but our previous doctor didn't think it was necessary. (The size and placement on the bone is her concern.) Is this a common procedure and would there be a risk of this surgery at her age? Would you recommend another opinion and if so what type of doctor would be best suited for this?

Doctor Answers 1

Lipoma on scalp

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

The scalp is a rather unusual location for a lipoma. It is possible that this growth is some other type of  benign tumor including another kind of cyst or a blood vessel malformatrion. If it is vascular there is a potential for bleeding and, perhaps, other complications due to the relationship of the growth to the skull. Because of this, some type of imaging study (ultrasound or MRI) might be helpful in identifying what it is before surgery. If it is a lipoma, the main reasons for removing it would be for precise diagnosis and elimination of cosmetic deformity which might worsen with time. Although dermatologists and general surgeons remove straightforward lipomas elsewhere on the body, I would recommend that you have a plastic surgeon deal with this growth.

Chicago Dermatologist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.