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Felt a lump at the base of skull, painful and tight neck. Had stomach bug and vomiting. Could it be strained muscle?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
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I recently felt a lump smaller than a jaw breaker candy but bigger than a marble on the back of my neck slightly to the right. It is located at my hairline near the base of my skull where it meets the neck. It does not feel like an ingrown hair. The lump is slightly painful and my neck seems to be tight. I noticed it saturday after being sick on friday I had a stomach bug and threw up a few times. Could it be a strained muscle and that bump or knot is a result of the strained muscle from thowing up? Or could it be more serious like lymphoma?
Posted Mon, 17 Jun 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 3 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
I have seen the photo attached. The area of lump is red and inflamed. This can be due to a swollen lymph node or an infected gland like sebaceous cyst. This is not likely to be due to a sprained muscle or something serious like lymphoma.
Since an infection is likely, you need to have systemic broad spectrum antibiotics and anti inflammatory medicines. Doing a hot fomentation will also help in decreasing the pain and stiffness. Do consult a physician for proper prescriptions.
I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Felt a lump at the base of skull, painful and tight neck. Had stomach bug and vomiting. Could it be strained muscle? 17 minutes later
Hi Dr Tayal,

Thanks for the quick response.

I will schedule a Dr apt. What is the purpose of the anti inflammatory medicines. I do have microscopic colitis which is aggravated when I take anti inflammatory medicines.

What other symptoms would I have if an infection was present? Should I ask for certain tests when I see my Dr?
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 22 minutes later
Thanks for writing again.
Anti inflammatory medicines will reduce pain and inflammation. You can avoid taking them if you have colitis.
You might have mild fever, pain and redness if there is infection. You can ask for FNAC to confirm the cause of the lump.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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