A common question from patient’s is: “What is this bump on my foot?” It is important for patients to
realize that these bumps could be both serious and nonserious conditions. It is always best to have these abnormalities examined and diagnosed by a foot specialist.
These bumps can be located on any part of the foot and ankle and come in all sizes. They may or may not cause pain with activity. Any lump found in the foot has the possibility of being cancerous and must not be ignored.
The most common lump found on the foot is a ganglion cyst. The ganglion is a fluid-filled sac that is
noncancerous. It is involved with tendon sheaths and or joints. A ganglion involves the leaking of fluid into a capsule surrounding the joint or tendon. Most ganglions are found on the top of the foot and sometimes on the side of the foot. This condition will usually not go away on its own. They tend to get larger and recur even once they are drained and injected with a steroid. Many times the best treatment is to have the ganglion surgically removed.
The second most common bump that we see is the plantar fibroma. This is a firm fibrous mass that is
located in the plantar fascia ligament on the bottom of the foot. They tend to get larger over time which causes them to eventually become painful. Nonsurgical treatments are best for this condition. The treatments involve steroid injections, shoe gear modifications, and orthotic therapy. Surgery is a last resort for these patients.
For foot bumps that are suspected of being cancerous, we performed biopsies to get an accurate diagnosis.
A tissue sample from the biopsy is sent to a laboratory or medical specialist to determine the diagnosis.
Further studies such an MRI may be used to gauge the size and involvement of adjacent structures of the mass. Once the studies are complete surgery is be performed to remove the mass.
Remember the bumps on feet do not tend to go away on their own. The sooner we are able to properly
diagnose the bump, the sooner the patient will have peace of mind.