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Lumps

Lumps can appear anywhere on your body. Most lumps are harmless but it's important to see a GP if you're worried or the lump is still there after 2 weeks.

Most lumps are normal

Most people get lumps and growths on their skin at some point. They can be caused by many things.

They can:

  • be soft or hard to touch
  • move around
  • be the size of a pea or a golf ball
  • be a lump under the skin or a growth that hangs off your skin

Non-urgent advice: See a GP if:

  • your lump gets bigger
  • your lump is painful, red or hot
  • your lump is hard and does not move
  • your lump lasts more than 2 weeks
  • a lump grows back after it's been removed
  • you have a lump in the breast or testicles
  • you have a swelling on the side of your neck, armpit or groin that does not go down
Information:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: how to contact a GP

It's still important to get help from a GP if you need it. To contact your GP surgery:

  • visit their website
  • use the NHS App
  • call them

Find out about using the NHS during COVID-19

What happens at your appointment

The GP will look at your lump. They may be able to tell you what's causing it.

If they're unsure, they might refer you to hospital for tests, such as a biopsy (where a very small sample of the lump is removed and tested) or an ultrasound scan.

Possible causes of lumps

There are lots of possible causes of lumps and growths.

Your symptoms might give you an idea of what’s causing it, but do not self-diagnose.

See a GP if you're worried or the lump is still there after 2 weeks.

Lumps anywhere on the body
Possible causes of lumps on your body
Lump Possible cause
Small, fleshy growth on the skin Skin tag
Soft, squashy lump that moves Lipoma
Hard lump that moves Skin cyst
Hard, painful lump with a high temperature Skin abscess
Lumps on the armpit, neck or groin
Possible causes of lumps on your armpit, neck or groin
Lump Possible cause
Swelling on the side of the neck, armpit or groin Swollen gland
Lump in the groin Hernia
Lump on the front of the neck Goitre
Fleshy growths around the groin Genital warts
Swelling on the side of the neck, armpit or groin that does not go down Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
Lumps around the bottom
Possible causes of lumps around the bottom
Lump Possible cause
Lump or lumps around the bottom (anus), often with itching or pain Piles
Lump on the bottom (anus) and the need to do a poo Rectal prolapse
Lump on the breast or testicle
Possible causes of lump on the breast or testicle
Lump Find out more
Lump or swelling on the breasts Breast lumps
Lump or swelling on the testicles Testicle lumps
Lump on the hands
Possible causes of lumps on the hands
Lump Possible cause
Smooth lump on the hand, wrist or finger Ganglion cyst
Rough growth on the hand or finger Wart

Page last reviewed: 21 January 2021
Next review due: 21 January 2024