Evaluation and Treatment of Subcutaneous Masses


Most subcutaneous masses are benign lipomas, inflammatory nodules, sebaceous cysts, ganglion cysts or benign fibrous lesions. These lesions are typically smaller than 3 cm in size. Sarcomas are usually firm, nontender masses that will grow much larger than 3 cm, if ignored.

Subcutaneous sarcomas have a much lower incidence than the benign and inflammatory subcutaneous masses. Of all soft-tissue sarcomas, a third occur subcutaneously. Between 2,000 and 3,000 subcutaneous sarcoma cases occur in the United States annually.

This topic provides an overview of the distinguishing characteristics for subcutaneous masses, including sarcomas, and an overview of the diagnosis and management of this subcutaneous lesions.

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