Skin inflammatory (nontumor)
Other dermatoses
Massive localized lymphedema in morbidly obese patients

Author: Mowafak Hamodat, M.D., MB.CH.B, MSc., FRCPC (see Authors page)

Revised: 22 October 2018, last major update August 2011

Copyright: (c) 2002-2018,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Massive localized lymphedema [title]

Cite this page: Hamodat, M. Massive localized lymphedema in morbidly obese patients. website. Accessed December 15th, 2018.
Definition / general
  • Huge masses in thigh, popliteal fossa, scrotum, suprapubic region, inguinal region and abdomen of morbidly obese patients, lasting 1 - 8 years
  • Clinically resembles lipoma or recurrent cellulitis, but also suspicious for malignancy
  • May be due to obstruction of efferent lymphatics by prior surgery, massive abdominal pannus or hypothyroidism
Clinical features
  • Nonencapsulated, poorly defined, mean 51 cm (range 38 - 75 cm), mean weight 6.8 kg (range 2 - 12 kg)
  • Overlying skin has marbled appearance resembling chronic lymphedema with induration and peau díorange
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Fibrous bands intersect lobules of adipose tissue
  • Lymphatic vascular ectasia, chronic inflammatory infiltrate, edema between collagen fibers, infarction and fat necrosis
  • No atypia
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on PathOut servers:

Courtesy of Mark R. Wick, M.D.

Differential diagnosis