OverviewCellulite is a term that is used to describe fat deposits under the skin that outwardly give the skin a dimpled, or orange-peel like appearance. Cellulite is most often seen in woman because the fat is arranged in large chambers separated by columns of collagen fibers. In overweight people excess fat is stuffed in these compartments causing them to bulge out. On the surface of the skin the bulging provides the dimply appearance of cellulite, especially in areas such as the hips, buttocks or thighs. Cellulite is predetermined by genetics so even thin women can develop the appearance. Factors such as hormones, pregnancy, and aging may all attribute to the weakening of the collagen fibers to give the cellulite appearance.
Update Date 11/20/2012
Updated by: Kevin Berman, MD, PhD, Atlanta Center for Dermatologic Disease, Atlanta, GA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.