HomeAnswersHematologylumpI have a soft bump behind my ear for a year. Is it infection or cancer?

I have a soft lump behind my ear. Could it be an infection or cancer?

I have a soft lump behind my ear. Could it be an infection or cancer?

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

iCliniq medical review team

Published At January 19, 2017
Reviewed AtJune 7, 2023

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I have a soft bump behind my left ear and that is about 0.59 inches wide and 0.98 inches long. It has been there for about a year now and in the last four months or so it has become sore. I have photos of it too if that will help. I am wondering what it might be. I thought it would just go away, but it has not. The size has not grown larger, but like I said it has become sore in the last four months. Could it be an infection or some cancer?

Answered by Dr. Prakash. H. M.


Welcome to icliniq.com.

Based on your query and attached report (attachment removed to protect patient identity), my opinion is as follows:

  1. It appears to be a lymph node. It usually indicates some surrounding area infection like the scalp.
  2. As it is painful, probably in response to infection. If it is hard, then we would think of cancer.
  3. However, since it is present for four months, I would suggest you get a test done for that lymph node, called FNAC (fine needle aspiration cytology), a simple test.
  4. It is probably nothing and might require a course of antibiotics. Meet your doctor to get the test done and if necessary, a course of antibiotics.

Investigations to be done


Probable diagnosis

Lymph node swelling probably inflammatory cause.

Treatment plan

Based on investigation.

Regarding follow up

Revert back with the reports.

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

Dr. Prakash. H. M.
Dr. Prakash. H. M.


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