Symptoms A-Z

Hard Foot Lump Symptoms, Causes & Common Questions

Understand your hard foot lump symptoms, including 10 causes & common questions.

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  1. 10 Possible Hard Foot Lump Causes
  2. Questions Your Doctor May Ask
  3. Statistics

10 Possible Hard Foot Lump Causes

The list below shows results from the use of our quiz by Buoy users who experienced hard foot lump. This list does not constitute medical advice and may not accurately represent what you have.


Warts, also called common warts or verrucae, are small, rough, rounded growths on the top layer of the skin. They may appear alone or in clusters. Common warts are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and are contagious through direct contact. They may spread from one place on the body to another simply through touch.

Warts often first appear on the hands and fingers, especially near the nails or after any injury to the skin. This is why biting fingernails is a risk factor for warts.

Warts are benign, meaning they are not cancerous. But they can be unsightly and interfere with normal use of the hands, so treatment is often beneficial through a few different methods of removal.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: small facial lump, painless facial bump, skin-colored facial bump, scaly facial bump

Symptoms that never occur with wart: headache

Urgency: Self-treatment


A corn is a hard, thick layer of skin that develops when the skin experiences lots of friction and pressure. A corn may cause discomfort, but is of no big concern.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: thickened skin on the foot with visible lines, foot bump with lines through the thickened skin, painful thickened skin, skin thickening

Symptoms that always occur with corn: thickened skin on the foot with visible lines

Urgency: Self-treatment

Morton neuroma

Morton neuroma, also called by the older name Morton's neuroma, is a thickening of fibrous tissue in the ball of the foot. This tissue encapsulates the nerve leading to the third and fourth toes. It is not actually a tumor of the nerve, as the name suggests.

The thickening is caused by years of trauma, irritation, and/or compression to the feet. High-heeled shoes, especially if narrow or tight, are a common cause. The condition is most often seen in women over age 45.

Symptoms include burning pain in the ball of the foot, especially with walking or running. The condition will not heal on its own and can lead to chronic foot pain.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination of the foot with simple range of motion exercises, and sometimes x-ray.

Treatment includes changing to better-fitting shoes that do not compress the nerve; using orthotics in the shoes to take more pressure off of the nerve; and in some cases the use of corticosteroid injections.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: foot numbness, pain in the sole of the foot, pain when touching the foot, pain in both feet, foot injury

Urgency: Self-treatment


Lipoma is a word that translates as "fatty tumor," but a lipoma is not cancer. It is simply a growth of fat between the muscle layer and the skin above it.

The exact cause is not known. The condition does run in families and is associated with other unusual syndromes such as adiposis dolorosa, which is similar. Lipomas most often appear after age 40.

Symptoms include a soft, easily moveable lump beneath the skin, about two inches across. A lipoma is painless unless its growth is irritating the nerves around it. They are most often found on the back, neck, and abdomen, and sometimes the arms and upper legs.

It is a good idea to have any new or unusual growth checked by a medical provider, just to make certain it is benign.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination, biopsy, and imaging such as ultrasound or CT scan.

Most of the time, treatment is not necessary unless the lipoma is unsightly or is interfering with other structures. It can be removed through surgery or liposuction.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: skin-colored groin bump, marble sized groin lump, small groin lump

Symptoms that always occur with lipoma: skin-colored groin bump

Urgency: Wait and watch

Achilles tendonitis

The Achilles tendon connects the back of the heel to the muscles of the calves. Achilles tendonitis can be an acute or chronic condition. The term tendonitis implies inflammatory cells in the region of the tendon. While this may be true in acute cases of tendon overuse or tendon tear, chronic Achilles tendon pain does not usually have inflammatory cells when looked at under the microscope and is therefore referred to as tendinopathy. This condition is most commonly seen in athletes who produce pain through overuse of the tendon, though the condition can present in individuals with a sedentary lifestyle as well. If an Achilles tendon that is producing pain from overuse is not allowed time to rest, the chronic condition can result. This chronic condition generally results in thickening of the tendon and can continue to produce symptoms for months to years.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: achilles-area pain, stiff achilles tendon, swollen achilles

Symptoms that always occur with achilles tendonitis: achilles-area pain

Urgency: Phone call or in-person visit

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Skin cyst

A cyst is a small sac or lump, filled with fluid, air, fat, or other material, that begins to grow somewhere in the body for no apparent reason. A skin cyst is one that forms just beneath the skin.

It's believed that skin cysts form around trapped keratin cells – the cells that form the relatively tough outer layer of the skin.

These cysts are not contagious.

Anyone can get a skin cyst, but they are most common in those who are over age 18, have acne, or have injured the skin.

Symptoms include the appearance of a small, rounded lump under the skin. Cysts are normally painless unless infected, when they will be reddened and sore and contain pus.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination. A small cyst can be left alone, though if it is unsightly or large enough to interfere with movement it can be removed in a simple procedure done in a doctor's office. An infected cyst must be treated so that the infection does not spread.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: skin-colored armpit bump, marble sized armpit lump, small armpit lump

Symptoms that always occur with skin cyst: skin-colored armpit bump

Urgency: Wait and watch

Rheumatoid arthritis

Arthritis is a general term for multiple conditions that cause painful inflammation and stiffness throughout the body. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic condition that is autoimmune in nature, meaning that the body's immune system which normally protects the body by attacking foreign pathogens mistakenly begins attacking the own body's tissues. In adults, RA is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis caused by autoimmunity.

RA is caused by the immune system attacking the lining of the joints (synovium). This immune activity results in inflammation in the synovium that causes it to thicken and expand. The thickening destroys the cartilage and bone of the joint and causes the tendons and ligaments of the joint to weaken and stretch.

Over time, the cartilage loss continues, the space between bones becomes smaller, and eventually the joint becomes loose, painful and unstable. As the condition becomes more advanced, RA can also affect multiple organ systems, including the eyes, skin, lungs and the cardiovascular system.

Diagnosis is through physical examination, blood tests, and X-rays.

Treatments include lifestyle modifications, several classes of medications, and sometimes surgery.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: fatigue, depressed mood, joint pain, muscle aches, daytime sleepiness

Urgency: Primary care doctor


Gout is a form of arthritis that causes sudden pain, stiffness, and swelling in a joint. The big toe is often affected.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: swollen toes

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Osteoid osteoma

Osteoid osteoma is a noncancerous bone tumor. It is most commonly found in the femur (thighbone) close to where it inserts into the hip bone. These tumors are also found in the tibia (shinbone) and the spine. Osteoid osteoma is not considered a cancerous tumor as it is very unlikely to spread throughout the body.

Symptoms include a dull, aching pain in your bones, localized swelling and tenderness, a discrepancy in the length of certain limbs, and possible scoliosis.

With careful monitoring, some tumors resolve on their own and can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication. A few different surgical measures can also be taken in other cases, and the rate of recurrence is quite low if the tumor is completely removed.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: lower back pain, upper back pain, spontaneous back pain, back pain that shoots to the butt, severe back pain

Symptoms that never occur with osteoid osteoma: hip pain, bilateral leg swelling, weakness in both arms, weakness of both legs

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Ewing sarcoma

Ewing sarcoma is a type of bone cancer often affecting the legs, pelvis, ribs, arms or spine. It can occur anytime during childhood and young adulthood; it is rarely seen in adults.

Rarity: Ultra rare

Top Symptoms: fatigue, loss of appetite, new headache, fever, rib pain

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Hard Foot Lump

To diagnose this condition, your doctor would likely ask the following questions:

  • What color is the bump?
  • Do you have a rash?
  • Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Do you feel pain when you touch the bump?

The above questions are also covered by our A.I. Health Assistant.

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions

Take a quiz to find out why you're having hard foot lump

Hard Foot Lump Symptom Checker Statistics

People who have experienced hard foot lump have also experienced:

  • 15% Foot Pain
  • 15% Pain In One Foot
  • 7% Pain In The Sole Of The Foot

People who have experienced hard foot lump were most often matched with:

  • 33% Wart
  • 33% Corn
  • 33% Morton Neuroma

People who have experienced hard foot lump had symptoms persist for:

  • 38% Over a month
  • 23% Less than a week
  • 16% Less than a day

Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

Hard Foot Lump Symptom Checker

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