Lumps can appear anywhere on your body. Most lumps are harmless but it's important to see your 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

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When to get medical help

See a GP if:

  • your lump gets bigger
  • your lump is painful, red or hot
  • your lump is hard and doesn't move
  • 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 the neck, armpit or groin that doesn't go down

What happens at your appointment

Your GP will look at your lump. They can tell you what's causing it in most cases.

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

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Possible causes of lumps

Use these links to get an idea of what you can do about most lumps. Don't self-diagnose – see a GP if you're worried.

Lumps anywhere on the 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

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 doesn't go down non-Hodgkins lymphoma

Lumps around the bottom

Lump Possible cause
Lump or lumps around the anus, often with itching or pain piles
Lump on the anus and the need to do a poo rectal prolapse

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

Lump Possible cause
Smooth lump on the hand, wrist or finger ganglion cyst
Rough growth on the hand or finger wart

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