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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Adiposis dolorosa


Other Names for this Disease
  • Dercum disease
  • Dercum's disease
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Symptoms

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What are the signs and symptoms of Adiposis dolorosa?

Adiposis dolorosa is primarily characterized by the development of multiple, painful lipomas (benign growths consisting of fatty tissue). These fatty growths may occur anywhere on the body and may range in size from small to quite large. The condition mainly occurs in adults and more women than men are affected.[1][2][3] The symptoms of adiposis dolorosa vary significantly from one person to the next and not all people have all symptoms. Symptoms that have been widely described include:[3]
  • painful lipomas
  • fatigue
  • memory disturbances
  • difficulty forming and expressing thoughts
  • rapid, unexplained weight gain
  • vascular problems (angiolipomas)
  • petechiae 
  • easy bruising
  • flushing
  • heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding
  • unexplained blood in the urine (hematuria)
  • non-pitting edema in subcutaneous fat 
  • gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
  • irritable bowel syndrome and other gastointestinal disturbances
  • migraines
  • feeling of fullness
  • joint pain and/or stiffness (especially when fat deposits are present)
  • muscle pain and stiffness
  • shortness of breath
  • tachycardia (rapid heart rate)
  • sleep disturbances (insomnia)
  • depression and/or anxiety
The pain associated with adiposis dolorosa can be debilitating.[2][3] Due to its chronic and progressive nature, mobility may become a challenge.[3]
Last updated: 6/28/2016

The Human Phenotype Ontology provides the following list of signs and symptoms for Adiposis dolorosa. If the information is available, the table below includes how often the symptom is seen in people with this condition. You can use the MedlinePlus Medical Dictionary to look up the definitions for these medical terms.

Signs and Symptoms Approximate number of patients (when available)
Arthralgia 90%
Obesity 90%
Abnormal hair quantity 50%
Arthritis 7.5%
Autoimmunity 7.5%
Bruising susceptibility 7.5%
Constipation 7.5%
Developmental regression 7.5%
Diarrhea 7.5%
Dry skin 7.5%
Hypothyroidism 7.5%
Keratoconjunctivitis sicca 7.5%
Memory impairment 7.5%
Migraine 7.5%
Paresthesia 7.5%
Seizures 7.5%
Skin ulcer 7.5%
Sleep disturbance 7.5%
Telangiectasia of the skin 7.5%
Xerostomia 7.5%
Anxiety -
Autosomal dominant inheritance -
Chronic pain -
Fatigue -
Middle age onset -
Painful subcutaneous lipomas -

Last updated: 7/1/2016

The Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) has collected information on how often a sign or symptom occurs in a condition. Much of this information comes from Orphanet, a European rare disease database. The frequency of a sign or symptom is usually listed as a rough estimate of the percentage of patients who have that feature.

The frequency may also be listed as a fraction. The first number of the fraction is how many people had the symptom, and the second number is the total number of people who were examined in one study. For example, a frequency of 25/25 means that in a study of 25 people all patients were found to have that symptom. Because these frequencies are based on a specific study, the fractions may be different if another group of patients are examined.

Sometimes, no information on frequency is available. In these cases, the sign or symptom may be rare or common.


References
  1. Hansson E, Svensson H, Brorson H. Review of Dercum's disease and proposal of diagnostic criteria, diagnostic methods, classification and management.. Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases. 2012; 7:23. http://ojrd.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1750-1172-7-23.
  2. Learning About Dercum Disease. NHGRI. June 27, 2012; http://www.genome.gov/17516629.
  3. Dercum's Disease (DD). Fat Disorders Research Society. http://www.fatdisorders.org/fat-disorders/dercums-description.


Other Names for this Disease
  • Dercum disease
  • Dercum's disease
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.