Intestinal lipomatosis is a rare disease with an incidence at autopsy ranging from 0.04 to 4.5%. Few cases have been reported in the medical literature. The condition is usually asymptomatic. Symptomatic cases usually present as obstruction or, less frequently, as bleeding. Intestinal barium studies, ultrasonography and computed tomography (CT) are useful diagnostic techniques.
A 51-year-old male was evaluated for progressive abdominal pain, tachycardia, headache and nausea. One year before this examination, he was evaluated for gastrointestinal bleeding. Abdominal CT with contrast enhancement demonstrated multiple submucosal masses in stomach and small bowel. CT and barium examination features were typical of lipomas. No specific treatment, invasive procedures or surgery were performed for the asymptomatic intestinal lipomas. The patient has remained symptom-free for 1 year.
Benign tumors of the small bowel are relatively rare, with lipoma being the most common type. The case reported here is considered to be unusual because stomach, duodenum, jejunum and ileum were affected. Lipomas are usually seen as smooth, nonulcerated filling defects. With these typical radiographic findings, preoperative diagnosis is possible keeping in mind this rare disease.