Medical questions & health advice by licensed doctors
"What should I do about a lump in abdomen?"
I'm a 21 year old male. For the past week, I've experienced what feels like a lump or fullness in the lower left quadrant of my abdomen. It is painless and usually can only be felt after I've stretched or exercised, though not always. There is no protrusion and I'm uncertain as to whether or not it's a lump, as I can only describe what feels like the sensation of something being inside my abdomen.
A lump in the abdomen can have many causes and you should consult your physician as the source of your symptoms can not be ascertained without formal evaluation and testing by your doctor. Abdominal lumps are frequently the result of herniations or abnormal growths. Abdominal hernias represent weakening of the strength layers of the abdominal wall, allowing for protrusion of abdominal contents outward. Hernias are often benign, though in a subset of patients they can cause pain. Rarely they can entrap fat and intestines, which is a medical emergency and is typically associated with acute onset and severe pain. Your physician can determine based on physical exam whether a lump represents a hernia. People can also develop growths in their soft tissues that can present as a palpable lump. For example, benign growths of fat cells can form a mass called a lipoma, which presents as a firm, mobile mass under the skin that is usually painless. Lumps can also be the result of trauma and bruising to the body, in which case they are usually associated with external signs of injury such as blue or red discoloration of the skin. Soft tissue lumps can also represent cancerous growths in certain cases and should therefore be evaluated by your physician.
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