Armpit Lump: When To Worry?

There are several causes for the appearance of an armpit lump. An important point to avoid them is not to use antiperspirant deodorants. See this and other tips below.
Armpit lump: when to worry?

It is very common to find a lump in the armpit and practically everyone has experienced it at some point in their lives. Don’t be so alarmed. We’ll explain why next and what steps should be taken when a nodule appears.

Causes of armpit lump

Almost 80% of cases are due to simple conditions that should not cause concern. The first thing to do, then, is not to be scared. We must think that it is most likely a furunculosis. But… what is a furunculosis?

First cause of an armpit lump: furunculosis

woman showing armpit

The most common cause of an armpit lump forming is furunculosis. It is a simple inflamed follicle, commonly known as “the gullet”. It’s painful and frightening the moment it’s detected, but it’s not serious.

The formation of a tongue is due to an infection of a sweat-producing gland, almost always produced by an inflamed hair. In an infection, sweat cannot break out and bacteria start to accumulate in the area.   Even though it is innocuous, it can be very uncomfortable.

In some cases the nodule disappears on its own, but in some people, where the hair becomes more inflamed, treatment is needed. It is normal for the doctor to prescribe antibiotics against staph. But, if it does not resolve itself, it will be necessary to carry out a small intervention to remove the cyst.

And what can be done to prevent such cysts or boils in the armpits? In fact there are people who tend to have these problems more often than others. This means that if it happened to you once, it is likely to happen again.

Antiseptic creams that prevent the appearance of cysts are usually sold, but the most recommended thing is to take care of hair removal in this area. It is precisely when we shave and the hair grows back that the danger appears. The hair can become trapped and give rise to a boil.

Try to wash your underarm area regularly by exfoliating so that the pore opens and the hair grows normally. Also try not to use deodorants that are too aggressive or with too many chemicals, as they can also damage this sensitive area.

This is usually the most common cause of an underarm lump.

Second cause of lump in the armpit: Inflammation of the ganglia

Woman raising her arms showing her armpits.

This case is also not a cause for concern. An inflammation of a ganglion is known as lymphadenitis. As you already know, a large number of lymphatic vessels are distributed in the armpit. In them, the lymph moves with functions related to cleaning and filtering.

In certain cases, when we are a little weaker or when some kind of virus attacks us, our lymph nodes can inflame and swell. Hence the appearance of a lump in the armpit. Lymphadenitis can happen mainly after skin infections or other infections caused by bacteria.

But then, what happens when we have an inflamed ganglion? Well, the first thing the doctor will do is do a little analysis of that lymph fluid to find out the cause of such inflammation and the type of bacteria that caused it. This is done with a puncture of the nodule itself in the armpit. The area is anesthetized and the puncture is not painful.

When the results come out, the doctor will know the cause of the inflammation. You will also know what treatment to follow to solve the problem.

Third cause: lymphoma

It’s a possibility. When a nodule appears in the armpit, there is a small possibility that it is an inflamed ganglion, and that such inflammation has lymphoma as its origin. Within lymphomas are “non-Hodking lymphomas” and “Hodking-type lymphomas”.

It’s a type of cancer, but stay calm. The chances are slim, and the condition is treatable and treatments are always very effective. Survival of Non-Hodking Lymphoma is 90% and of Hodking Lymphoma 70%. This type of lymphoma originates in a type of white blood cell called B lymphocytes or B cells.

Today there are many advances in science and we have to see the word cancer as a synonym for hope. It is a disease that requires personal effort, courage and that with a lot of support and can be overcome!

How to know if the nodule is caused by a furunculosis or a lymphoma?

woman with the arm raised

The first thing is to stay calm. Whenever you detect a lump in your armpit consult a doctor as soon as possible. Lymphomas are usually associated with cases of fever, sleep problems and a lot of sweating during the night, in addition to weight loss.

But in certain cases they also appear without other symptoms. Thus, the best thing to have no doubts is to go to the doctor. And don’t worry, in most cases it’s a simple cyst caused by a boil.

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