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Lumps under the armpit: causes

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Feeling a lump in any part of the body is a situation that alarms us and fills us with anguish. However, in most cases, nodes under the armpit are not due to severe pathologies, to the point that it is believed that at some point in life, we ​​will all have some lump in this area of ​​the body. It would help if you first did not panic and think that it may be a temporary inflammation of the lymph nodes, which are located under the armpit and usually react to infections, bacteria, and viral diseases.

80% of cases where a lump is found in the armpit is a benign condition such as furunculosis, a cyst, or an infection in nearby parts of the body. It is always important to recognize which pathologies are related to the appearance of an armpit protrusion to know when it is a medical emergency and when it is not. As there are many causes of lumps under the armpit, in this FastlyHealarticle, we tell you what they are.


It is the leading cause of lumps under the armpit. As the name implies, it is about the inflammation of a hair follicle. This occurs because the gland produces sweat that has become infected due to embedded hair. Therefore the work does not find an escape to go outside the body and begins to accumulate along with bacteria, which is quite painful and can cause the appearance of lumps of medium or large size.

In general, this is a condition that the body manages to heal independently. Still, sometimes it can also happen that the infection is so advanced that it is necessary to go to the doctor to prescribe antibiotics and painkillers to help with the pain. When the hair is very encysted, a simple intervention may be needed to remove the lump in the armpit and allow the follicle to drain sweat properly.

If you have already had furunculosis, you must know that reducing the use of razors and preferring waxing can help prevent this from happening again since shaving armpits is the leading cause of this condition. Exfoliating your armpits every week will also help avoid furunculosis.

Swollen glands

In the lower part of the armpit, there is a large part of the body’s lymph nodes responsible for filtering and purifying the blood and mobilizing the lymph to prevent diseases. Inflammation of these lymph nodes is the second most common cause of lumps under the armpit. It is known in medicine as lymphadenitis, which can appear when our immune system has been weaker than expected and has allowed creeping into our body. A virus or bacteria that has usually caused a disease or infection.

When the reason for the lump in the armpit is a swollen lymph node, a doctor should examine the area. He will likely decide to take a sample of the liquid containing said lump to find out what is causing the inflammation, what bacteria has caused it, and what treatment you must use to treat the condition. The puncture to take the fluid sample is not painful since anesthesia is applied and only a slight prick is performed.

Some diseases inflame the lymph nodes, which will return to normal when the body has managed to combat said pathology or receive treatment for it. These conditions can be tonsillitis, colds, syphilis, E. Coli infections, tuberculosis, mononucleosis, AIDS, herpes, and rheumatic and autoimmune diseases.


Although it is not as common as the previous two causes, this possibility exists. When the lymph nodes are inflamed, it can also happen that this lump is a collection of malignant cells that have formed a tumor. In the case of lymphomas, there are two types: non-Hodking lymphoma and Hodgkin lymphoma. Life expectancy is very high in both cases, being 90% for non-Hodking and 70% for Hooking.

This type of cancer can also cause painless lumps in the groin and neck and symptoms such as fever, night sweats, and weight loss. To treat lymphomas, it is necessary to apply several chemotherapy sessions, and the exact amount will depend on each person’s situation. Many people have managed to survive this type of cancer, so keeping calm, hopeful, and optimistic is essential to facing this disease.

Fat accumulation or lipoma

Lipomas are bumps formed by an accumulation of fat that creates a uniform and solid lump. This condition is not infected, so it does not present pus and does not cause more significant discomfort than mild discomfort, sometimes only cosmetic. They can be removed or left in the area if they do not cause any pain. If they need to be removed, lipomas can be removed through surgery or suction.

Breast cancer

The breasts are located very close to the armpits, so it may be possible that breast cancer, diagnosed or not, has spread to the lymph node tissue causing a metastasis. However, when this occurs, the person has commonly experienced another series of symptoms that have made them go to the doctor beforehand, so it is improbable that the primary cause of a lump under the armpit is breast cancer.

However, suppose a person has been previously diagnosed with this type of cancer or is a survivor of it and finds a lump under the armpit. In that case, it is essential to see a doctor immediately to rule out the spread of cancer or its return.

When to go to the doctor

Whenever a lump is found under the armpit, it is essential to go to the gynecologist to examine the breasts and lymph nodes in this area and thus determine the exact cause that is causing the inflammation. As the causes of lumps under the armpit are many, an essential thing while waiting for the appointment with the specialist is to remain calm because without visiting the expert, there is no indication that it is a bad condition, especially if we remember that 80 % of the bumps in this area are benign.

This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor if you present any condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Lumps under the armpit: causes, we recommend that you enter our Immune system category.

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