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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What causes painful lump on lower back?

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Dr. Matt Wachsman

Addiction Medicine Specialist

Practicing since :1985

Answered : 3042 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 10 Sep 2015 in Back Pain
Question: hi
for the past 3 weeks i have been having problems with my lower back - belly area around the kidney. There seems to be a lump in that area and its is very uncomfortable. the first week the area gave me pain whenever i took a deep breathe or stretched certainly but after a week or so the pain subsided. after then there was no such pain but there seems to be a lump in the area that is uncomfortable especially when the time comes to sleep. do you have any ideas what might be wrong with the area?
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Answered by Dr. Matt Wachsman 51 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Limited possibilities

Detailed Answer:
cannot give a definite answer without being there,obviously,butt the general information I can give is likely to be relevant simply because there are few possibilities

this seems to be largely an external or at least not an internal issue. as such,skin, muscle and maybe joints and bones are about all that is there.

trauma can give a bruise
infection can give an abscess.
these are both pretty obvious.infection would be quite inflamed.

a spammed muscle is near the center of the back but a bit off to the side. it is sore to touch and to move it. it usually pops up suddenly.anti inflammatories rest perhaps a warm shower are often helpful for sore back muscles.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Matt Wachsman 2 hours later
I am worried it maybe something more serious like a kidney infection or cancer. Do you think that might be the case?
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Answered by Dr. Matt Wachsman 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
several thoughts

Detailed Answer:
Cancer is unregulated growth. The growth would not feel like normal tissue, but more to the point, cancer does not grow overnight. Although people might not notice growth over weeks and suddenly it seems like it is there, mostly a painful growth pops up when people think it did; and popping up suddenly in the middle of the day is not the way cancer would go. Kidneys are inside the outer muscles. If a lump is outside, then kidney involvement doesn't seem reasonable. Cannot say in your particular case without actually feeling it.

Would have to say, cancer extends by usually predictable patterns but it does not have to. So..... lumps are one of the most common presentations of cancer in a young person because testicular and lymphomas are probably the two most common cancers in the age group 20 to 40. And, testicular cancer starts in the testes and lymphoma gives lumps in lymph nodes, which are not at all common in the back (neck and armpit; and generally start out as multiple lumps).

Basically, it depends on feeling where the lump is in relation to surroundings. It seems a bit unlikely that someone can feel a lump that is inside the body. External lumps can be cysts, spasmed muscles, while they can be infections, they seem like infections (hot, warm, often with redness or draining).

However, Even if You are Imagining it (very very doubtful), if there are worries then having it seen will certainly help the worries. Indeed, even more so if the lump did NOT exist.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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