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October 12, 2006


Question from Simi Valley, California, USA:

My daughter developed a lipoatrophied spot in her abdomen approximately five years ago. We switched from Humalog to NovoLog. There has been no growth of the site in years. She is currently 15 and it bothers her. She does competitive dance and is not comfortable in her costumes because of the lipoatrophy. Is there anything cosmetic to treat the site? Our specialist has never seen this and has e-mailed colleagues, but we have been waiting several months for a course of treatment. Do you know of any treatments, injections, etc. that can reverse or treat the site?


If this were lipoatrophy – loss of subcutaneous fat tissue – this would be quite rare with currently highly purified insulins, but, it still does occur. Treatment is best with injections into the rim that causes controlled lipohypertrophy from overuse and allows the area usually to fill in. Please discuss with your diabetes team since there may be some changes in insulin absorption and kinetics that occurs under such circumstances.


[Editor’s comment: See also a previous question about the treatment of lipoatrophy.