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How to get rid of lump: Skin Cyst: Home Treatment | Michigan Medicine


Skin Cyst: Home Treatment | Michigan Medicine

Topic Overview

Home treatment for a lump, such as an epidermal (skin) cyst, may relieve symptoms but may not make the cyst go away. An epidermal cyst is a small, round lump in the top layer of skin called the epidermis. It may be filled with a soft, yellow substance called keratin. Epidermal cysts most often appear on the face, ears, back, or chest. But they can appear on almost any part of the body.

When you have an epidermal cyst, the lump or bump under the skin is:

  • Small, round, and smooth.
  • About the size of a pea, or a little smaller or larger.
  • Yellow, white, or skin-colored. It can turn red if it becomes inflamed.
  • Painless. But it can be painful if it’s inflamed.

To treat a lump that may be caused by infection under the skin:

  • Do not squeeze, scratch, drain, open (lance), or puncture the lump. Doing this can irritate or inflame the lump, push any existing infection deeper into the skin, or cause severe bleeding.
  • Keep the area clean by washing the lump and surrounding skin well with soap.
  • Apply warm, wet washcloths to the lump for 20 to 30 minutes, 3 to 4 times a day. If you prefer, you can also use a hot water bottle or heating pad over a damp towel. The heat and moisture can soothe the lump, increase blood circulation to the area, and speed healing. It can also bring a lump caused by infection to a head (but it may take 5 to 7 days). Be careful not to burn your skin. Do not use water that is warmer than bath water.
  • If the lump begins to drain pus, apply a bandage to keep the draining material from spreading. Change the bandage daily. If a large amount of pus drains from the lump, or the lump becomes more red or painful, evaluation by a doctor may be needed.


Current as of:
July 2, 2020

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP – Emergency Medicine
Adam Husney MD – Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica MD – Family Medicine
E. Gregory Thompson MD – Internal Medicine
David Messenger MD

Current as of: July 2, 2020

Healthwise Staff

Medical Review:William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP – Emergency Medicine & Adam Husney MD – Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD – Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson MD – Internal Medicine & David Messenger MD

How to Get Rid of Fatty Tumors, Known as LipomaCalabasas Dermatology

How to Get Rid of Fatty Tumors, Known as Lipoma

Lipomas and their effects

As if cellulite, tummy bulge, and sagging skin were not enough to contend with, there is also the fatty tumor. Literally a lump of fat that forms under the skin, this unsightly growth is just one more thing women (and men) must deal with. It is benign, so surgery is unnecessary. To a woman, though, another lump on the thigh or back is another thing that must be removed.

These fatty growths, known as lipomas, do not turn into cancer. They do not spread to other areas of the body (metastasize) as cancer would. However, people who have one usually see more pop up in the same and different areas of the body- mainly the back, arms, thighs, and neck. They are soft, round and easily moved around when touched.

Getting rid of lipomas with a dermatologist

There are a few options to get rid of lipomas. Be warned, though, insurance will not cover these procedures since they consider lipomas to be harmless to your health. Liposuction can be used to help get rid of the unsightly lumps. However, if the lump is large, the liposuction will not be able to get rid of all of it. Some people choose to let their family doctor inject steroids to shrink the lipomas. You could also decide to have it surgically removed under local anesthesia. There is no guarantee that the lump will not return, though.

For some, since the fatty tumors are not harmful, they will decide to live with them. Hiding them under sleeves and pants and scarves is an option too, unless you live in hot climates. Artfully arranged hairstyles may hide them on the neck. Ultimately, the choice will be up to the individual as to what should be done with the lipoma. Factors like public appearance, self-esteem, and careers will determine what they do with the lipoma.

For those who cannot live with the unsightly tumor, do your research. Look for a qualified dermatologist when considering liposuction. Ask your doctor about the side-effects of steroids. Look for a board certified plastic surgeon who knows how to remove the lump with minimal scarring. You should be very pleased with the results when the lipoma is finally gone.

To learn more, we encourage you to contact the team at Calabasas Dermatology Center to learn how we can help you treat and remove lipomas.

How do I get rid of a lump in my earlobe? Ask The Expert

A lump in the earlobe is usually a benign cyst. There are two ways to get rid of an earlobe cyst. Often the best way to remove this type of cyst is a small cut following a local anesthetic. A doctor can also cut and drain the cyst.

Removing the cyst means it is less likely to come back, but the draining option, while quick and easy, means the cyst is more likely to return.

Sometimes benign cysts will go away without treatment.

Why do I have a lump in my earlobe?

It is not uncommon to have lumps or bumps on the earlobe. These lumps, which look similar to pimples, are benign cysts. An earlobe cyst is also known as an epidermoid cyst.

These occur when epidermis cells that should have been shed get deeper into the skin and multiply, forming the walls of the cyst. They secrete a type of protein called keratin which fills up the cyst.

Other causes of earlobe cysts include damaged hair follicles or oil glands or they also tend to run in families. Sometimes they can form for no reason at all. They are generally no cause of concern.

However, there are a number of factors which can put an individual at a higher risk of earlobe cysts:

  • Having a rare syndrome or genetic disorder
  • Being past the age of puberty (earlobe cysts are rare in babies and children)
  • Having acne issues means the skin is more prone to developing lumps of fluid
  • Skin injuries that cause cells to react in an abnormal way and bury themselves deeper into the skin, causing a lump to form

How long does it take for a lump in your ear to go away?

Benign earlobe cysts can go on their own, but the length of time this can take varies from person to person. Sometimes these lumps can only go away with treatment.

How do you get rid of a cyst in your ear?

The only sure-fire way to get rid of an ear cyst is surgically removing the growth following the administration of a local anaesthetic. By removing the cyst-like this, it is unlikely that it will return.

Another option is draining the cyst of its contents. This procedure is quick and simple, but this does run the risk of the cyst returning.

Earlobe cysts are almost always benign and can disappear on their own. However, if they grow and cause pain or hearing loss, then a GP appointment is recommended to discuss the options available.

How do I get rid of a lump in my earlobe piercing?

Lumps can form on the earlobe following a piercing. This is caused by the body making too much scar tissue, known as keloids, which spread out from the original wound, causing a small mass or bump which is bigger than the original piercing.

A keloid will not go away on its own and will require surgical intervention.

13 Home Remedies To Reduce Armpit Lumps

An armpit lump is a swelling or a bump under your arm. It is caused due to swollen lymph nodes and can be quite painful. In some cases, these lumps last for a few days and go away on their own, while in a few cases, the lumps increase in size and cause pain. Certain home remedies can help reduce the symptoms and appearance of armpit lumps. However, if the lumps refuse to go away or become enlarged, consult a doctor immediately to avoid complications.

Causes And Symptoms Of Armpit Lumps

The most common causes of painful lumps under your armpit are swollen lymph nodes. The lymph nodes are part of the lymph system that moves the lymph in and out of the bloodstream from the body tissues. These nodes filter the lymph fluid and can swell up due to the following reasons:

  • A bacterial, fungal, or viral infection in the arm or breast
  • An infection in the entire body like AIDS or herpes
  • Cancer (usually breast cancer or lymphoma)

Lumps in the armpits can also form due to:

  • Allergic reactions
  • Benign fat tissue growths, known as lipomas
  • Cysts

The most serious cause of these lumps is cancer. Hence, it is recommended to consult a specialist if they do not subside.

The symptoms of armpit lumps are as follows:

  • Swollen lump in the armpit
  • Inflamed and tender skin over the swollen lump
  • Pain when the lump is touched
  • Pain in the arm or chest area
  • Discomfort while moving the arm

In most cases, the lump due to an infected lymph node or a simple fatty growth can be easily treated at home. Here is the list of home remedies for armpit lumps.

Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Painful Armpit Lumps

1. Warm Water Treatment

An age-old and simple home remedy to treat lumps is to apply heat to the swollen area. Although there is no scientific evidence, it is believed that this method may help reduce the swelling and pain in the affected area (1).

You Will Need
What You Have To Do
  1. Soak the towel in hot water and wring out the excess.
  2. Place this on the affected armpit for 10 to 15 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat the warm water treatment 2-3 times a day.

2. Massage

Studies have shown that massage can help in reducing pain (2). It can also help in improving blood circulation to the affected area and reduce swelling.

You Will Need

Olive oil or coconut oil

What You Have To Do
  1. Take a drop or two of the oil on your fingertips and massage the armpit area gently with it.
  2. Use circular motions and upward and downward strokes.
  3. Massage for a few minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 2 times a day.

3. Vitamin E

Vitamin E possesses anti-inflammatory properties (3). These properties may help in reducing the size of the painful lump in the armpit. Ensure you consume vitamin E supplements only after consulting your doctor.

You Will Need

Vitamin E capsules

What You Have To Do

Take a vitamin E capsule with water.

How Often You Should Do This

Have one capsule every day.

4. Watermelon

Watermelon has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties (4). These properties may help detoxify the blood, eliminate the lump-causing bacteria, and reduce the swelling in the affected area.

You Will Need

Watermelon juice

What You Have To Do

Have a glass of chilled watermelon juice with breakfast.

How Often You Should Do This

Drink watermelon juice every morning.

5. Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is a rich source of vitamin C and has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties (5). This may help reduce the painful swelling in the lump and heal it.

You Will Need
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Water
  • Cotton ball
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix equal parts of lemon juice and water.
  2. Dip the cotton ball in this juice and apply it to the lump.
  3. Let it air dry.
  4. You can also drink a teaspoon or two of lemon juice added to a glass of lukewarm water in the mornings.
How Often You Should Do This

Reapply lemon juice 3-4 times on the painful armpit lump.

6. Nutmeg

Nutmeg has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties (6), (7). These properties may help reduce pain and enable the body to fight infection and swelling caused due to bacterial infections.

You Will Need
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg powder
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • A cup of hot water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add the honey and nutmeg powder to the water and mix it thoroughly.
  2. Drink this water while it is still warm.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat this once every day to get rid of armpit lumps.

Caution: Avoid this remedy if you have acidity.

7. Onion

The ever-popular onion may also be used to treat the lumps in the armpit. Onion juice possesses analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties (8). This can help in reducing the pain and inflammation in the armpit.

You Will Need

An onion

What You Have To Do

Extract the juice of an onion and gulp it down. You can add your favorite veggies to make the onion juice taste better.

How Often You Should Do This

Drink a glass of the healthy onion (and vegetables) juice every day.

8. Turmeric

Turmeric is known for its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties (9). It may help ease painful lumps and reduce swelling. The topical application of turmeric may reduce the urge to itch and fasten the healing process.

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • A cup of hot milk
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix the turmeric powder well in the milk so that no lumps remain.
  2. Drink this hot turmeric-infused milk.
  3. You can also make a paste with turmeric powder and water and apply it to the lump. Let it dry for 10-15 minutes and then rinse with water.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink a glass of turmeric milk every day, preferably before going to bed. Repeat the topical application of turmeric 2 times a day.

9. Vitamin A

Vitamin A plays a critical role in promoting immune function (10). It helps in T-cell and B-cell migration and activity. It also aids lymphocyte function and has anti-inflammatory properties. When the body does not receive enough vitamin A from the diet, its immune response falters, and this increases the chances of developing an infection in the lymph nodes. Hence, you may increase the sources of vitamin A in your diet to reduce armpit lumps quickly.

You Will Need
What You Have To Do
  1. Add carrots to your salads.
  2. Munch on papayas and carrots as a mid-day snack.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this daily.

10. Charcoal Compress

Activated charcoal may help reduce pain and inflammation. It absorbs toxins from the body and helps treat the infection (11).

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon activated charcoal
  • 1/2 teaspoon flaxseed powder
  • Water
  • Paper towel
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix both the powders and add enough water to make a thick paste.
  2. Put this paste on a paper towel and place it on the affected area.
  3. Leave it on for 10-15 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this every 2 hours every day until the lump goes away.

11. Garlic

Studies have shown that garlic has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties (12). Regular intake of garlic may help eliminate the infection that is causing your lymph nodes to swell up and reduce pain and swelling. Garlic is also an excellent detoxification agent.

You Will Need
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • A glass of lukewarm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Crush the garlic cloves or chop them finely.
  2. Ingest this with a glass of water first thing in the morning.
  3. You can also include garlic in your daily diet by adding it to the dishes you make.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this every morning.

12. Contrast Baths

Contrast bath therapy involves using warm and cold water treatment to reduce muscle pains. The cold treatment may help ease the pain while the warm treatment might improve blood and lymph circulation (13), (14). This method may work as an effective home remedy to treat armpit lumps.

You Will Need
  • Warm water
  • Cold water
  • 2 buckets or tubs
What You Have To Do
  1. Submerge your armpit in warm water for three to four minutes.
  2. Submerge it in the cold water for two minutes.
  3. Repeat this four to five times.

If it is difficult to submerge the affected area in the tub, use two different cloth pieces soaked in the two tubs and place them on the armpit for the same time duration as mentioned above.

How Often You Should Do This

Use contrast bath therapy 2 times a day.

13. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has antiseptic properties that fight the infection (15). It is also thought to have anti-inflammatory properties that may help reduce pain and swelling.

You Will Need
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Water
  • Cotton cloth
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix equal amounts of apple cider vinegar and water in a bowl.
  2. Soak the cotton cloth in this mixture and place it on the affected area for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Remove the cloth and rinse the area with warm water.
  4. Pat the area dry.
  5. You may also drink a teaspoon of ACV and honey added to a glass of water in the mornings.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat this a few times in a day.

It is important to understand that all lumps in and around your breast are not a sign of cancer. Hormonal changes often lead to the formation of these lumps. If your lump does not subside in a week with these remedies, please consult a doctor.

Here are a few pointers to bear in mind when you are dealing with an armpit lump.

A Few Tips For Healthy Armpits

  • Stay Hydrated – Most problems in the human body arise due to improper regulation of body fluids and blood. It is important to drink plenty of water to keep your body hydrated and ensure proper blood circulation. This may help reduce the painful lumps to an extent since it may provide the necessary nutrition and antibodies.
  • Reduce Caffeine Intake – Coffee and tea are rich sources of caffeine and can cause the lump to grow. Though there are no studies to link caffeine intake to lumps in the armpit, it is best to reduce your consumption of caffeine. Steer clear of aerated drinks and consume fresh fruit juices instead.
  • Avoid Foods That Cause Pain – It is important to make a note of the foods that elevate the pain and swelling in the lumps. Avoid these foods to fasten the healing process. Maintain a food diary and note down any food items that tend to trigger the pain or increase inflammation. You will soon know what to consume and what not to when you have a lump in the armpit.
  • Say No To Oily And Spicy Foods – These foods cause you to sweat more and can lead to more underarm sweating, which, in turn, may cause bacterial growth. The need is to keep the growth in check. Hence, avoiding these foods will help in getting the lumps to heal faster.
  • Stay Clean – The armpits are one of the most active body parts that sweat due to excessive activity of the glands. Keep the underarms dry and clean to heal the lump faster. If the lump is caused due to a bacterial infection as a result of clogged pores, it will go away soon with proper hygiene.
  • Consume fruits and vegetables. Avoid reheated and fried foods. Reduce the consumption of sweets.
  • Get at least 6-8 hours of sleep.

Some other tips to keep in mind are:

  • Do not share towels with someone who may have lumps. Bacterial infections are bound to spread.
  • Avoid using another person’s toiletries.
  • Do not use a harsh soap on the lump.
  • Use lukewarm water to clean the area several times a day and also during your bath.
  • Do not pick on the lump or itch/scratch it as the infection can spread, leaving you with more painful lumps to deal with.
  • Do not shave your underarms when you have a lump as it can further aggravate the condition.
  • Do not use any luxury talcs or deodorants until the lump abates.

Visit a doctor if the lump does not subside in a week. They will prescribe antibiotics to control the infection.

When To See A Doctor

Sometimes, armpit lumps come and go without any pain or discomfort. Using the home remedies for armpit lump treatment can accelerate this healing process and not let them aggravate, especially in the case of infections. If the lump doesn’t heal even after a couple of weeks or seems to be worsening, please consult your doctor as you might need an antibiotic prescription.

There are plenty of causes that can be responsible for that painful lump in the armpit. However, it is important to monitor it closely and not self-diagnose. Armpit lumps have been associated with breast cancer and lymphoma. If you notice tenderness, redness, pain, or irregularity in size, seek medical advice immediately.