36 answers

Painful,Itchy Lump Under My Arm?

Recently my armpit started itching....a few weeks later it began hurting ALOT.I discovered there is a lump under my arm and it is exactly where it has been itching and it feels like I have a balled up sock tucked under my arm all day long.I have no insurance so I have been hoping it goes away.But if it doesn't go away in the next few days then I may have to go anyway.Has anyone ever experienced this?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I appreciate all the responses.I haven't had a baby since the birth of my last almost 2 yrs ago.So I am not so sure that is it.I thought the itching might be from the deodorant but the lump is inder my skin so I don't think the deodorant is causing that.I will give it a few days and then try and find a cheap way of seeking help and then I will update everyone afterwards.

Another Update: Thanks for all the responses.I do believe the itching was from the deodorant and prob from shaving since it happen soon after a shave but the lump is too large to be an ingrown hair or pimple under the arm.But the pain has stopped except when I toach it and it isn't itching so much today.But I use Dove doedorant,that I have used for some years now.So I don't think that 1 is the problem.But I do recieve alot of samples from a site I visit and I recently recieved a cucumber type one from Dove as I have before but maybe combined with the shaving and the change in the brand that one day it could have irritated my skin and cause the skin or node under my arm to swell.I will wait and see if it continues to go away and update later after a few days.

Featured Answers

Hi C.,

I don't know what it is but since it has lasted a few weeks I think you should definitely go to the doctor, or emergency room if you don't have a regular doctor.

I had several of these and one was in my arm pit (the worst one!) I also had one in my ear and on the inside of my thigh. All at different times, all different locations, all different sizes. My hubby had one and scratched it so much it get really infected! My son had one on the lower back and one on the calf of his leg. He was the first to get one and it was bad. we thought it was a bug bite. He had to have his lanced and drained and then did the sits bath at home to clean it out. I opened mine on my own (with a pin) and squeezed the stuff out..OUCH and AHHH at the same time! I did have to go to the dr. for and antibiotic to get the staff infection out of my body. She said they would keep coming back if I didnt get rid of the problem. Then I found out constant draining was BAD because it kept opening up the area and allowing more backtiria in. OK, i am a picker so it was hard for me not to pick ans squeeze. But once I drainded the areas a few times and took ALL my meds the last bump went away and no one has had any since then (last year).

I have experienced several episodes of painful lumps. it started with one and increased to several under both arms. I was told it was a lymph node (gland) problem developing. To shave under my armpit and use non irritating deodorants, preferably clear ones, that won't clog the pores or glands.

More Answers

It sounds like a swollen lymph node, but you should definitely get it checked out because your armpit is also full of breast tissue. It's most likely nothing to worry about, but I wouldn't take a chance. They will most likely send you for an ultrasound which is the cheapest diagnostic procedure. I am an ultrasound tech and have had many patients with the same problem.

Go to the doctor!! This week. It could be just a swollen lymph node, but do you really want to take the chace on it being somthing else and waiting longer. Even no insurance, tell your family doc or your obgyn whichever you see that you have no ins. and they will probably work with you, but oh what peace it would bring. Spend the money!!! I read osme of the others, if it is staph or strep it can spread.

Hi C.,

Please don't be too alarmed. I read some of the other responses and they are certianly frightening enough. The odds that it is something serious are very low. It is most likely a staph boil or carbuncle. Although very painful, they are rarely cause for concern if handled properly. There may be occasions when antibiotics are necessary, but not always. Check out this link:

http://www.e-calc.net/articles.php?tid=2348

If you don't see an improvement if a week or so, or if it get much worse, then I would make an appointment to have it checked out. note: it will likely become more painful as it forms a head and draining it can be very painful, but I am talking about worse after that or if it spreads and you develop a fever. Most likely caused by a type of staph bacteria, it can be spread easily so avoid this by wshing your hands thoroughly after touching the area.

Good luck

I had several of these and one was in my arm pit (the worst one!) I also had one in my ear and on the inside of my thigh. All at different times, all different locations, all different sizes. My hubby had one and scratched it so much it get really infected! My son had one on the lower back and one on the calf of his leg. He was the first to get one and it was bad. we thought it was a bug bite. He had to have his lanced and drained and then did the sits bath at home to clean it out. I opened mine on my own (with a pin) and squeezed the stuff out..OUCH and AHHH at the same time! I did have to go to the dr. for and antibiotic to get the staff infection out of my body. She said they would keep coming back if I didnt get rid of the problem. Then I found out constant draining was BAD because it kept opening up the area and allowing more backtiria in. OK, i am a picker so it was hard for me not to pick ans squeeze. But once I drainded the areas a few times and took ALL my meds the last bump went away and no one has had any since then (last year).

If it's been weeks, yeah I would have it checked out. I know I have some breast tissue under one arm that whenever my breasts would be larger (such as right before my period or when I was pregnant or particularly when I was engorged after my milk came in) would show up in lumps. Bigger lumps depending on the situation. My OB/GYN said it was pretty common in womenm which is why they check all the way up under the arms when doing a breast exam. I noticed you have a 5 month old. If you are nusring a blocked milk duct is possible. Warm compresses and making sure that breast is fully drained at each feeding can help that. But, it shouldn't last for weeks, so that concerns me. I'd say you probably need to suck it up and get it checked out. You'll feel better even if it is nothing to have a pro's opinion.

C., Please go to the Doctor. You can also go the Social Services and see if you qualiy for Medicaid for you and your family if you don't have insurance. Check this out soon and Good Luck. B. J.

try to stop shaving and stop using deodorant....maybe is only irrited....that happend to me once...
pam

I know you had a lot of responses and said you were just going to let it go and see if it goes away.... but I am an ER nurse and have seen abscesses (boils) here. If you start running a fever you need to have it checked. Until then use warm/hot compresses to get it to drain.
Best of luck.
V.

Dear C.,

I used to get a lot of "bumps", some itchy, some painful, some in odd colors. My health practitioners have called them "boils" and "cysts" and "non-malignant fibrous tumors".

I used to just assume that it was genetic because my father has always struggled with these.

However, I got fed up with it and finally did some investigating on my own. I found out about different things that can cause these types of growths and have made adjustments so that I rarely have problems any more.

But, honestly, when I read your post, I felt alarmed for you and pray that you will go to seek professional medical help soon.

My heart goes out to you because I truly do understand.

I am also uninsured and have had health challenges that needed attention. I was able to gain wisdom so that I could handle them on my own. And, thank God, that wisdom has been extremely helpful and effective. Without my education in health and nutrition, I know that I would never have been able to find some effective solutions on my own.

If you would like more details on what I have been doing, please send me a private note so that I can get back to you.

God bless!

--D.

yes i have had that problems. you need to go to doctor.it could be an abses, which is very sore. they will probally have to cut it open and drain it.

It sounds like a "boil" and sometimes they need to be lanced.
You can try hot compresses and hope that your body absorbs the fluid that is built up there. More likely than not, you are going to need a little help. A Minute Clinic at a CVS might be able to tell you what you exactly need before making an appt. with a doctor but my thoughts are, you are a woman and lymph nodes go all over the breast tissue, even under the arm. Get it seen about right away. Tell them up front that you do not have insurance. Perhaps they will cut you some slack.
Good luck,
Cathy

Hi C.,
Just like the others have said, i think its probably just a reaction to the aluminum in your deodorant which has clogged your pores. I have done a little research and even asked a doctor and found out that it is best not to use aluminum becuase it stops you from perspiring, which is natural bodily process. Now I know you don't want to smell like a bag of onions, so try a natural aluminum free deodorant, but if the lump doesn't go away in about 2 weeks to a month, then seek the care of a physician.

Hi C., I'm 42 and I think I experienced the same thing when I was in 2nd grade. My mom is a pediatric nurse and she said it was a boil. She told me to leave it alone and when it popped on it's own she squeezed all the puss out of it. You should have a professial do this. Try CVS or Walgreen's drug stores. They have clinics in them now. Good luck. I hope it's not anything worse. Lets all pray that C.'s under arm lump is just a boil.

ps: I read the other responses and I do believe it was an allergic reaction.

I am not writing to scare you but I am writing because I feel as a recentlyI was diagnosed woman with cancer I can not ignore this either. I encourage you to get it looked at. If it is nothing than you can say I checked it out for my children and if it is something you can act on it for your children. I would not wait insurance or no insurance. If it is cancer there are avenues that the cost for tests and treatment can be covered. Please don't wait like I did.

I have experienced several episodes of painful lumps. it started with one and increased to several under both arms. I was told it was a lymph node (gland) problem developing. To shave under my armpit and use non irritating deodorants, preferably clear ones, that won't clog the pores or glands.

If it will not burst when you apply slight pressure than you may need to see a doc in the box.
Also you may want to change your anti-perspirant. The chemicals can sometimes be too strong. Or it could simply be an in-grown hair that simply need to be tweezed out.

Take care,

Cameo

Sweetheart I don't know what this may be, but I know one thing you need to have this checked out ASAP. You don't need to take any chances, you are too young and have two beautiful babies to think of. Please have this checed out. I pray that it nothing, but we just want to be sure.
God Bless.

C., It may be "cat scratch fever". Have you been scratched by a kitten or cat recently (within a couple of months)? Sounds like some infection has set in and caused one of your lymph nodes to grow large and hard. You will need to go in and have it aspirated (does not hurt with local anesthetic) to make sure there isn't a bigger problem. Then it may need to be cut out. If you don't have insurance, I would try a doctor's care office and ask for a consult to obtain advice and see what they say. i wouldn't wait too long before seeking help. When it comes to your lymphatic system, the less disruptions the better.

Good luck!

This could just be a cyst from an ingrown hair. These happen frequently in areas that have a high-friction tendency (i.e. underarms and bikini areas). My doctor told me to apply heat several times a day or as much as you can. Either use a heating pad or hold warm water on it as long as you can in the shower. This normally reduces the swelling in a couple days and then normal shaving will clear the hair (usually).
Good luck!

Hi there, C.-
Although I haven't experienced that personally, it sounds a lot like what my friend had. When she finally went to the doctor, they discovered it was an ingrown hair that had grown under her skin. It was balled up, creating the lump.

Before she saw the doctor, she was afraid it was cancerous. The doctor told her that any cancerous lumps usually aren't painful.

I hope this helps somewhat. Good luck!
-Jen

I think you have a hair bump. That's when a piece of hair starts to grow back (usually after shaving), but then curls back inside the skin. Maybe you can get your husband to examine that area and then take a sterile (burn it) needle to open it up, then use tweezers to get the hair out. It's very simple and not painful, just slightly uncomfortable from the soreness that's already there. Good Luck!!

i had that when i was about 19, and it was an ingrown hair from shaving my underarm with a razor that may have gotten too dull. my doctor just told me to take over the counter anti-inflammatories (ibuprofen, etc) for a few days, and it did start going away. it probably took about two weeks.

i'm sure you know, however, not to let that sit too long. lumps are never a good thing to find - there are plenty of free medical clinics. there's one in taylors on main street.

its most likely and ingrown hair from shaving i get them a lot under my arm just wait for it to pop DONT pop it after its popped it will go away

It could be a yeast infection. Try putting some Lotramin on it and see if it clears up. If it's really yeast, it should start feeling better in a day or so.

S.

Hi! I don't know if you've been to the doctor yet (I've been on vacation this week and am just now checking my messages). It sounds like you have folliculitis. I had this in college in a very tender area. I think you could find a "minute clinic" or some cheaper urgent care type place to be seen. I don't think it will resolve itself. What the doctor did was just squeeze the life out of it which did hurt a little but you know then it's over. I had to then keep warm compresses to let it drain any remaining "junk." Not to be gross but then you might have a little "pocket" of skin that might get blocked up sometimes but you just squeeze it out (looks like a little piece of rice) and it shouldn't ever block up like it did at first. Hope this info helps you. I would definitely just get it taken care of instead of dealing with it on a regular basis.

Hope all goes well for you. My situation was a cyst from a sweat gland in my armpit. In the beginning, it would get infected like a pimple, hard, itchy. It would also completely disappear after a few months. Then, I had a solid mass for a year before I actually did anything about it. The whole time, I was wondering about cancer and wondering why I didn't just go into the Dr. to have it checked. I guesss that I thought it would go away like it had before.

I was very relieved when I had learned what it was. Insurance or not, you should have it checked.

My exhusband had something similar at one time -- ended up being Cat Scratch Fever. He was scratched on the hand by a barn cat and it attacked the closest lymph node. You really need to get that checked out by a doctor. Anything that attacks a lymph node ccan spread throughout the body quickly.

This could easily be from your deodorant. Esp. after having a new baby, your body changes... Even if you havent changed deodorants, you could becoming sensitive to something in it. Try an all natural one before rushing to spend hundreds at the doc. Herbal Magic is an aluminum free/all natural one that works fantastic!!! I found it on evitamins.com. I will never go back now, it is awesome and never irritates me, feels yucky,etc. And it washes off easy which the aluminum ones dont. If you do try this and it doesnt go away within about 2 weeks of using the new deodorant, then you def. want to have it checked out just to be on the safe side. I bet this is what it is though:) Good luck!

Could be anything from an infected sebaceous gland or ingrown hair to a lymphoma lump (although the pain/itch probably indicates a not-cancer-infection. I wouldn't worry too much but I wouldn't NOT address it. My advice is to go to the health department (free) and get it looked at. Best not to ignore and hope it's nothing.

Good Luck!

I would recommend going to the county health department or maybe an urgent care place to have someone look at it. It could be something simple like an allergic reaction to a new deodorant. Hopefully that's the case, but it could be something more serious, so worth have it checked out. I've called urgent care places before to check out pricing and I think they said between $120 and $160 for a visit. Then, if you need to get any medications, a lot of places offer $4 prescriptions (such as Walmart). Publix offers free antibiotics.

Good luck and I hope everything works out okay.

Hey, I am not sure if this is the same thing, but I"ll tell you what happened to me.

I have had this before. It is VERY painful. Is it getting larger? My doctor told me the name of it, I can't remember it, though.
It's basically a huge pimple under your arm, with LOTS of yellow stuff that will get larger and larger and then pop out.
I had about 3 of these at one time. They were so painful I could not put down my arm, I had to go around with my arm held out LOL

When it finally popped, the stuff just kept pouring out, I had to push a lot of it out. it left a huge hole.

It did not pop on it's own, I had to keep squeezing it. When it comes out it feels so much better, but it's a horrible pain while you are squeezing it.

Doctor give me antibiotics for this, also pain medicine. You might can see if OTC pain meds like advil, aleve, etc will work for the pain.

If it does not pop the doctor might have to 'lancet' it, meaning cut it open to let it drain.

Hi. It could be just an under the skin pimple. Your deodorant clogs the pores under your arm just like makeup on your face. If you go to a dr. I suggest going to a dermatologist. A regular physician wont be able to do anything and I would hate for you to waste your money. I hope everything turns out good.

It could be something as simple as an ingrown hair in your armpit, or it could be an infection in your lymph nodes that are located in the armpit, but it could be something life threatening such as breast cancer, too. Not to scare you, but with that third possibility present, going to a physician to hear the actual cause of your lump with pain and discomfort and getting the correct treatment for it is THE answer.

That said, you can go to WedMD.com and check your symptoms there and the recommended treatments for each possibile diagnosis.

Hope this helps!

Sweetie please don't wait. I'm not sure what it can be and I pray that it's not anything to serious, but it's better to get it checked out. We have Lymp Nodes throughout our bodies that swells when there is an infection present. Take care of yourself and know that God has everything in control.

It sounds like you have an infection, probably from an ingrown hair. Go to the dr. They will lance it for you and give you an antibiotic. Make your appointment now, so you can avoid added cost the emergency room. If you don't have a regular Dr. see if there is a walk in clinic in your area.

Hi C.,

I don't know what it is but since it has lasted a few weeks I think you should definitely go to the doctor, or emergency room if you don't have a regular doctor.

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