What is a leg lump?

A lump is a bump, nodule, tumor, or localized area of swelling that can occur anywhere on your body. Leg lumps can be caused by any number of conditions, including infections, inflammation, tumors and trauma. Depending on the cause, leg lumps may be single or multiple, soft or firm, painful or painless. They may grow rapidly or may not change in size.

Leg Problems Spotlight

Leg lumps due to local infectious causes may appear as boils, abscesses, or swollen areas. Traumatic causes of lumps range from bug bites to severe injuries that can produce a hematoma (collection of blood in body tissues). Conditions that produce inflammation throughout the body, such as rheumatoid arthritis (chronic autoimmune disease characterized by joint inflammation), may be associated with lumps, particularly around your knee joint. Lumps in the knee area can result from the many different kinds of arthritis or from injuries to the joint.

While these conditions are rare, both benign and malignant tumors of the skin, soft tissues, or bones can sometimes feel like leg lumps. In these instances, a biopsy or surgical removal of the lump can determine whether the tumor is cancerous.

In some cases, a lump may occur with other symptoms that might indicate a serious or life-threatening condition that should be immediately evaluated. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of the following symptoms: paralysis or inability to move a body part, loss of sensation, absent pulses in the feet, uncontrolled or heavy bleeding, high fever (higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit), or uncontrollable pain.

If your leg lump persists or causes you concern, seek prompt medical care.


What other symptoms might occur with a leg lump?

A leg lump may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Conditions that result in a leg lump may also involve other body systems.

Localized symptoms that may occur along with a leg lump

A leg lump may be accompanied by other symptoms in or around the leg including:


What causes a leg lump?

Leg lumps have many possible causes, including trauma, infections, inflammatory diseases, benign tumors, and cancers.

Traumatic causes of a leg lump

Minor and severe injuries, as well as internal trauma, can result in a localized swelling or lump on the leg including:

Medical Reviewer: Cynthia Haines, MD Last Annual Review Date: Aug 5, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Bones, Joints and Muscles

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