Medical Definition of Lipodystrophy syndrome

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Lipodystrophy syndrome: A disturbance of lipid (fat) metabolism that involves the partial or total absence of fat, and often abnormal deposition and distribution of fat in the body. There are a number of different lipodystrophy syndromes. Some of them are present at birth (congenital), and others are acquired later. Some are genetic (inherited), and others are not. One lipodystrophy syndrome is associated with HIV infection and antiretroviral drug therapy but the exact cause of this syndrome is unknown. In lipodystrophy syndrome, the face, arms, and legs become thin due to loss of subcutaneous fat, and the skin becomes dry, the lips crack, and weight drops. See also cephalothoracic lipodystrophy; protease inhibitor.

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Last Editorial Review: 1/24/2017

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