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Soft, movable, pliable bump on tongue, not painful, diagnosed as inflamed papillae. Worried about oral cancer

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Dentist, Pedodontics
Practicing since : 1981
Answered : 24 Questions
I have a soft, movable, pliable, bump on the back right side of my tongue, basically even with my back molars. I don't remember biting or any trauma to that area. It doesn't hurt to touch it and if I hadn't been looking, probably still wouldn't notice it. I have been to my primary care who said it was an inflamed papillae but that was a week ago and I am freaking out about what I read on oral cancer. What could this be?
Posted Sat, 21 Apr 2012 in Dental Health
Answered by Dr. Amitabha Chakraborty 4 hours later
Thank you for posting your query.
First of all, I would like to reassure you that a “soft, movable, pliable" lesion in that area of tongue is not usually XXXXXXX If it is an inflamed papilla, it should be painful, atleast mildly.
Since I believe that more information can help a physician help a patient better, I would request you to answer the following questions:
a.     Is the lesion increasing in size?
b.     Is the surface smooth or can you feel any irregularity, probably an ulcer?
c.     Is it possible for you to send us a picture of the lesion? You can upload a picture of the lesion using the “Upload your pictures” feature on the right.
Awaiting your reply.
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Follow-up: Soft, movable, pliable bump on tongue, not painful, diagnosed as inflamed papillae. Worried about oral cancer 11 hours later
It has not increased in size, it is smooth and doesnt appear or feel ulcerated. Since it is so hard to see I cant take a good picture.
Answered by Dr. Amitabha Chakraborty 16 hours later
Thanks for writing back.
Given the current history, there are several possibilities that arise. These include:
a.     If it is on the surface of the tongue then it could be an hypertrophied papillae
b.     If it is on the side of the tongue there is a possibility that it may be some form of benign myoma (benign tumor arising from muscle tissue). Both are harmless but may need surgical intervention to remove it.
I would suggest that you see your treating dentist for the same who can evaluate the lesion treat the same.
I hope I have answered that your query.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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