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Surg Laparosc Endosc Percutan Tech. 2011 Aug;21(4):218-22. doi: 10.1097/SLE.0b013e31821ea189.

Safe techniques for endoscopic resection of gastrointestinal lipomas.

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  • 1Department of Minimally invasive Surgery and Advanced Endoscopy, St. Vincent Hospital, Indianapolis, IN, USA.



Gastrointestinal (GI) lipomas are rare, benign, slowly growing, submucosal tumors, which can either be incidentally found as silent tumors of the GI tract or be the cause for GI bleeding, anemia, intussusception, and bowel obstruction. Endoscopic removal is a valid alternative to surgical resection of these tumors. In the recent past, many submucosal lipomas were for the most part resected surgically due to the risk of perforation using endoscopy. There are newer techniques available to allow safe endoscopic removal of these lesions. We present 3 successful techniques tailored to the location of the lipoma and size.


In our unit, 3 symptomatic GI lipomas were referred to us for surgical resection, 2 originating from the duodenum and 1 from the cecum were diagnosed and resected under endoscopic ultrasound and endoscopy. We performed 3 different techniques to remove these lipomas. One of the lipomas in the duodenum was in the duodenal bulb. It was mobile and 3 cm in size. We attempted to remove this broad-based lipoma by snare and cut technique after its borders were elevated with injection of saline and epinephrine. The second duodenal lipoma was 1.5 cm. This pedunculated lipoma was located in the second portion, on the pancreatic side of the duodenum proximal to ampulla. This lipoma was lifted up with a snare and its base was cauterized resulting in successful removal. The third GI lipoma was 3.5 cm in size pedunculated and located in the cecum. The base of this pedunculated lipoma was ligated with poly loop device and endoclip resulting in ischemia and spontaneous separation of the lipoma from the colonic wall. All cases were revisited with follow-up endoscopy. All 3 methods, when used selectively, were found to be very safe and effective.


All 3 lesions were successfully removed and histopathologically confirmed to be lipomas. After endoscopic removal, no complications were observed.


Carefully selected GI lipomas, which in the past have required surgical resection due to high risk for perforation can be endoscopically removed with great success.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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