As we age we can develop a range of lumps and bumps on our face and bodies. These should be assessed to ensure there is no underlying medical condition and to ensure that the lesion is not malignant. Lumps and bumps can be removed for aesthetic purposes once they are determined to be benign.
Some of the most common lumps and bumps include skin tags, and milia. Skin tags are usually skin-colored or darker and resemble a small piece of hanging skin. They can be located on the face, body, and in skin folds such as the neck, armpits, and groin. Milia tend to develop on the face, particularly on the eyelids and cheeks. They appear like tiny white bumps just beneath the surface of the skin.
Everyone is at risk of getting skin tags and other lumps and bumps. They are a natural part of the aging process. Fortunately, they are often easily and painlessly removed. Our General Surgeons can assess any lumps and bumps, and recommend the best plan of action.
What Are the Lumps and Bumps?
Lumps can be anything from a corn or callus to swollen lymph nodes, cysts or lipomas. Here's a brief explanation of the last three.
- Swollen Lymph Nodes: Located in the neck, armpits and groin, these glands become swollen when exposed to bacteria or a virus.
- Cyst: Non-cancerous closed pockets of tissues that can become inflamed or infected. They may occur due to a clog of a sebaceous gland.
- Lipoma: These occur because of excessive fat cells form tumors underneath the skin. They are often found on the shoulders, back and neck.
- Moles: These skin lesions are growths that appear as brown or black spots on the skin.
- Warts: These are small, hard, benign growths on the skin that are caused by a virus.
- Skin Tags: These are tiny pouches of skin that are connected to the underlying skin by a thin "stalk."
- Sebhorrheic Kertoses: Like moles these appear to be brown or black growths and they have a waxy, scaly and slightly elevated appearance.
- Cherry Agnioma: These are basically red moles and usually occur in people aged 30 or older. A collection of small blood vessels within the growth give them the red appearance.
- Keratosis Pilaris: This appears as several small, rough red or tan bumps primarily around hair follicles on the upper arms, legs, buttocks and sometimes cheeks. It is often referred to as "chicken skin."
How Do We Treat Lumps & Bumps?
Depending on the type of condition you have, there are a variety of treatment options that may be performed. The most common ones include:
- Surgical Excision: This procedure cuts or removes the lump from your body with an incision. This is typically performed as an outpatient service.
- Tissue Sample: Your doctor may take a tissue sample to determine the cause of the cyst or lump.
- Steroid Injections: These are extremely useful for reducing lipoma and many other lumps. While they may not make the lump disappear entirely it allows you to avoid surgical removal.
- Antibiotics: Some lumps and bumps are caused by bacteria. In those causes, you will be treated with antibiotics.
Don’t be embarrassed about your moles, lumps, or bumps. Talk to our surgeons, Dr. Jeremy Whitt at the Surgical Clinics of East Arkansas Medical Group.