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Can small white bump which hurts when touched and secrets white discharge be a cold sore?

Mar 2013
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Practicing since : 1998
Answered : 5625 Questions
I am a healthy 29 year old male. I have never had sex and am in a serious relationship with a female who also does not have sex. I have a small white bump on my upper lip that is the size of a pin head that hurts slightly to the touch and seems hard. I have many fordyce spots on my lips. My biggest concern, however, is that this could be a cold sore. I do not have HSV1 (I was tested a few months back) and neither does my partner, unless I somehow spontaneously contracted it. I do not know what an early cold sore would look like though so I could be worried for nothing. In any case, this bump is not normally on my mouth. Please clarify what it could be. I have no other symptoms. Thank you. Please note. it has slightly increased in size. I slightly apply pressure to it like a pimple and a white, pasty stuff came out. could this be an irritated Fordyce spot or even a pimple? Thanks Last follow-up. This morning, after having squeezed the white paste from the tiny bump, it was left as a painless, hard bump that a few flicks of my fingernail removed. Seems to be gone with no pain now, just minor irritation from messing with it.
Posted Thu, 9 Jan 2014 in Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Answered by Dr. Aarti Abraham 22 hours later
Brief Answer: THIS IS NOT A COLD SORE. Detailed Answer: Hello Thanks for trusting us with your health concern. Let me clarify in a very simple sentence - this is NOT a cold sore. I have gone through your photographs, and in no way, does the bump resemble a cold sore. It is a pimple - nothing more, and nothing less. A cold sore starts off generally as a blister, or a crop of blisters. Then the blister would ooze serum ( clear liquid like substance ) after rupturing and eventually scab over and heal. Noticeably, preceding the appearance of the blister ( s ), there is marked itching and tenderness over the area. In your case - 1. There was no preceding itching or tenderness. 2. It is NOT a blister, but a pimple, just like acne you get anywhere else on the face 3. White pasty material came out, as happens in the case of a pimple, not clear serum oozing out. 4. It has completely disappeared after picking it, unlike a herpes cold sore which would scab and then heal. 5. There is no pain , which is the chief factor. So please dont worry, this is / was not a cold sore. Also, you have already been tested, and have never indulged in any risky sexual behaviour that would put you at risk of exposure. One word of caution though - never pick or pop such lesions. It always worsens them / causes more to break out. All the best. PLease feel free to ask for further clarifications.
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Follow-up: Can small white bump which hurts when touched and secrets white discharge be a cold sore? 3 hours later
Thank you doctor. The area does still hurt but mostly just feels sore probably from messing with it. I know I shouldn't have touched it but I work on TV where I live and any blemish shows. It was quite a surprise to get a pimple on my lip...I did not know it was possible. There was a tiny amount of clearish fluid that came out with the white fluid, I should clarify. What could have caused a lip pimple? Thank you again.
Answered by Dr. Aarti Abraham 3 hours later
Brief Answer: DETAILED BELOW Detailed Answer: Hello again. A cold sore ( herpes ) would have prodromal itching and tenderness. After popping and scaling off a pimple, the residual soreness is different. A lip pimple is caused by the same reasons that pimples occur on other body parts - it is basically an overactivity of the oil glands ( sebaceous glands ). It just happens, there is nothing more to it. I am 99.9 % confident, that it was a pimple. Your being clear on the tests further should reassure you. Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Can small white bump which hurts when touched and secrets white discharge be a cold sore? 2 days later
Thanks for the great information! I appreciate your reassurance very much. One last update on this situation and then I shall depart and review you to the highest for your great help. There is a tiny pinhead sized scab where the pimple was. Hardly noticeable unless you're looking for it. It has been present for two days, since we last spoke. Should this be normal? The skin still feels tough in that area too. Thank you once again and happy holidays.
Answered by Dr. Aarti Abraham 4 hours later
Brief Answer: DETAILED BELOW Detailed Answer: Thank you for the appreciation. Makes my day indeed ! It is normal, what you describe. If you have popped a pimple anywhere else on the face, there would be a small pinpoint telltale scabby area, with a bit of toughening of the skin around. SO its perfectly alright. As its hardly noticeable, do not notice it ! I would greatly urge you to stop thinking and worrying about it, it DOES really sound and look like just an innocent pimple to me. All the best to you also, and many festive cheers of the season ! Please feel free to use the following link to contact me directly on this portal, anytime you would wish to - WWW.WWWW.WW
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