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I have a painless small raised lump on my arm. What is it?

I have a painless small raised lump on my arm. What is it?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. K. Shobana

Published At December 2, 2017
Reviewed AtDecember 21, 2023

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

I have a small red raised lump on my arm with a slightly waxy appearance. It does not itch and has grown from nothing to approximately four to five mm in diameter in three months. Initially, it just started as a very small dot and has grown. I am attaching the pictures for your reference. Please help.

Answered by Dr. Gaurang Gupta


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have seen your photos (attachments removed to protect patient identity).

It is a small reddish papule. Since how long have you had this? Is it painful?

This could be either of these.

  • Insect bite reaction or small lipoma.
  • Mastocytoma (mast cell tumor) or melanoma.
  • Many other differential diagnoses are there. Being an experienced dermatologist, I want to assure you that no doctor can diagnose it without doing a biopsy or FNAC (fine-needle aspiration cytology). As I told there could be many differential diagnoses of it, so duration also is an important factor.

    If duration is about three to five days, then more chance of any insect bite (which is very common). But, ultimate tool to identify it is by biopsy or FNAC only. So, I suggest you to go undergo this test procedure to clear it.

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

It is not painful and not itchy. I have had it for about three months, by the time it has grown in size. I will make an appointment with my general practitioner. Thank you.

Answered by Dr. Gaurang Gupta


Welcome back to icliniq.com.

You told it is totally symptomless. So, it goes in favor of granuloma or lipoma. Both the conditions are symptomless and both grow slowly, gradually and increase in size. That is good you are going to general practitioner (GP). According to me, you must have to undergo biopsy to identify it. You do not need to worry as it is not a dangerous condition. As per my experience, I would keep my provisional diagnosis as granuloma but biopsy is a must.

Treatment plan

Apply simple steroid cream like Fucibet (combination of Betamethasone and Fusidic acid) for 10 days.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Gaurang Gupta
Dr. Gaurang Gupta


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