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Orthopedics. 1989 Oct;12(10):1351-8.

Computed tomographic evaluation of fatty neoplasms of the extremities. A clinical, radiographic, and histologic review of cases.

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Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, NY 10021.


Eleven lipomatous tumors of the extremities (7 liposarcomas, 4 lipomas) were evaluated radiographically by several modalities, including computed tomography (CT) in all lesions. Lipomas were seen on CT scan as well delineated, homogeneous masses with negative attenuation coefficients ranging from -95 to -160. Liposarcomas were inhomogeneous, multilobulated, poorly delineated lesions located exclusively in the subfascial or intramuscular planes, with an intermediate range of attenuation coefficients between those of fat and those of muscle. In six of seven liposarcomas, definite low density areas were identified by attenuation coefficient as fatty tissue. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was obtained in two patients and was helpful in defining the extent of the tumors and their relationship to vital structures, but MRI could not differentiate benign from malignant tissue. Computed tomography is recommended as the cornerstone in the initial radiographic evaluation of growing or painful lipomatous soft tissue masses of the extremities.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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