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Lumps, Bumps and Moles

As we age, a variety of lumps, bumps, and moles start to appear on our skin. “Lumps, bumps, and moles” encompass different kinds of skin growths, such as skin tags, vascular birthmarks, warts, cysts, and more. They often appear on the face, neck, arms, torso, back, legs, and groin. While most of these growths are benign, and it is completely normal for us to develop lumps, bumps, and moles during our lifetime, it is important to keep track of any new growths and schedule regular skin exams with one of our board-certified dermatologists at the Millburn Laser Center in Millburn, New Jersey.

What are Lumps, Bumps and Moles?

Common types of lumps include: 

  • Cysts — round lumps
  • Lipomas — lumps made of fat cells

Common types of bumps include: 

  • Dermatofibromas — small, hard bumps that resemble mosquito bites
  • Hemangiomas — blue, purple, or red bumps caused by too many blood vessels
  • Seborrheic keratoses — light to dark colored bumps that look like warts

Moles are collections of melanin-producing cells that form a cluster and reside on the top layer of the skin. They can be flat or raised with colors ranging from black and brown to blue and flesh colored. 

Causes ofSkin Growths

These common skin growths may be caused by factors such as exposure to ultraviolet rays, skin trauma, or family history. To properly identify your condition and its causes, it is best to consult with your dermatologist.

Diagnosing Skin Lumps,

Bumps, and Moles

During your skin check, your dermatologist will ask a series of questions such as:

  • When did you first discover the lump/bump?
  • How many did you see?
  • What are their colors, shapes, and textures?
  • Do they hurt?
  • Are you experiencing itchiness, inflammation, drainage, fever, etc.?
    • A skin examination, along with a review of your medical history should help your dermatologist diagnose your condition, rule out any other disorders, and develop the best treatment plan for you.

    Treatment for Lumps, Bumps, and Moles

    Treatment will depend on your specific condition, your goals, as well as your dermatologist’s recommendation. 

    Home Care

    Skin rashes, inflamed bumps, and swelling lymph nodes can be treated with ice packs and baking soda baths. These home remedies will help ease pain and reduce inflammation.  


    Skin lumps caused by an injury will fade on their own, but if a skin lump is caused by an abscess or infection, antibiotics will be prescribed.

    For rashes, warts, and acne bumps, topical skin products containing ingredients such as salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide will be prescribed.

    A possible treatment for inflamed bumps, such as cysts, are corticosteroid injections, which are powerful anti-inflammatory drugs.

    Medical Procedures

    If topical treatments fail to treat the skin condition, there are procedures that can help, such as:

    • Cautery
    • Liquid nitrogen
    • Chemical peels
    • Microdermabrasion
    • Laser treatments
    • UVB light therapy

    When skin lumps require drainage, cause pain, or are diagnosed as hazardous to your health, you a more invasive treatment may be the only solution. Surgical removal can be done on cysts, boils, corn, abscesses, and cancerous moles or tumors.

    To learn more about lumps, bumps, and moles, visit

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q: What Is The Outlook For Those Who Have Lumps And Bumps?

    A: Most of these skin lesions aren’t serious and, most of the time, are just cosmetic nuisances. Usually, you’ll only need treatment if the lump or bump is bothering you. if you’re concerned about a particular skin growth, see a dermatologist. He or she can evaluate it and make sure it is not a symptom of an underlying serious condition.

    Q: Why Do I Need To Pay Close Attention To My Moles?

    A: Melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer, can begin with a mole. If you are 30 years old or more, and you have a new or changing mole that is itchy or bleeding, it could be a sign of melanoma.

    Q: When Should I Have A Skin Exam?

    A: According to, while skin exams are already part of routine health check-ups, regular skin checks are especially necessary for those who are at higher risk of skin cancer (e.g., those who have had skin cancer before, those with reduced immunity, and those with a strong family history of skin cancer). Your doctor should also be able to tell you how often you should have a skin check.

    Q: Can I Do A Skin Check At Home?

    A: Absolutely. It is very important to stay vigilant about your skin’s health. The Skin Cancer Foundation has developed a tool (ABCDE) you can use to examine your skin at home:

    • Asymmetry – If you draw a line through your mole and the two halves don’t match, it could be a sign of melanoma.
    • Border – melanomas have uneven borders. Edges may appear notched or scalloped.
    • Color – benign moles usually have one color (e.g., brown). A melanoma will have a variety of colors and may appear red, white, or blue.
    • Diameter – melanomas are larger in diameter compared to a pencil eraser (6 mm).
    • Evolving – when a mole is evolving, it changes in shape, size, color, and elevation, and may bleed or itch. 

    Keep in mind that a home skin check doesn’t replace a check with a dermatologist, which should be done yearly.

    Schedule a Checkup at Millburn Laser Center

    Any lump, bump, or mole on your skin is worth showing to a doctor if you have any concerns. Our team of board-certified dermatologists at the Millburn Laser Center in New Jersey are ready to address your concerns, properly diagnose your skin condition, and create the best treatment plan for you. Contact us at 973.376.8500 to schedule a consultation.

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