By Gary M. White, MD

Madelung's disease

Madelung's disease, also known as benign symmetric lipomatosis, presents as horse collar infiltration of the neck, shoulders and upper trunk with fat.


Benign, nonencapsulated fatty masses enlargement of the tissue around the head and neck, the trunk and the upper extremities occurs.


Weight loss does not help. Surgical debulking and liposuction have been tried and may be helpful. If no functional impairment occurs, therapy may not be needed.

Additional Pictures

Madelung's disease Madelung's disease Madelung's disease


A 68-year-old man with an extended history of heavy alcohol use presented with soft, painless and slow-growing swellings over his neck, shoulders and head. CMAJ. 2013 Jan 8; 185(1): E79.


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