8 doctors weighed in:

How do you distinguish between lymph nodes and fatty deposits?

8 doctors weighed in
David Miller
Family Medicine
4 doctors agree

In brief: Shape, size, locale

Shape, size and location are the biggest clues.
Also, they have a different subjective "feel" to a trained set of hands.

In brief: Shape, size, locale

Shape, size and location are the biggest clues.
Also, they have a different subjective "feel" to a trained set of hands.
David Miller
David Miller
Answer assisted by David Miller, Medical Student
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2 doctors agree

In brief: Nodes

Lymph nodes are usually much better outlined when palpated.
They are firmer while fatty deposits (as with lipomas) are much softer and much less well circumscribed. Because enlarged nodes can be a sign of malignancy i would suggest having a doctor examine them.

In brief: Nodes

Lymph nodes are usually much better outlined when palpated.
They are firmer while fatty deposits (as with lipomas) are much softer and much less well circumscribed. Because enlarged nodes can be a sign of malignancy i would suggest having a doctor examine them.
Dr. Donald Shenenberger
Dr. Donald Shenenberger
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1 comment
Dr. Otto Placik
Lymph nodes tend to be located in very specific areas whereas lipomas may occur anywhere. For example lipomas occur over the shoulder area but lipomas rarely if ever occur there. Also lymph nodes rarely become larger than 2 cm and tend to be grouped whereas a lipoma may become massive and tends to be solitary.
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