When should you get a lump checked? Mark Wright warns of tumour scare

Former The Only Way Is Essex star revealed he had a 12cm tumour removed from his armpit

Kate Ng
Thursday 09 December 2021 17:08
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Mark Wright has urged fans to ensure they get any health concerns checked after he had a large tumour removed from his armpit.

The former reality TV star revealed that he had an operation to remove a 12cm tumour on Wednesday, and shared photos of himself in the operating theatre and the tumour after it was removed.

Wright, who starred in The Only Way Is Essex, shared his story on Instagram and said he initially wanted to keep the operation private, but decided it was the right thing to do “if I can help/potentially save one person”.

He said he found a lump in his armpit area that was initially “not very big, but enough to cause concern and to be cautious enough to get it checked”.

After a doctor dismissed it as a “fatty lump” that did not require treatment, Wright left it alone, but it grew and began to bother him.

“I am someone that when it comes to life in general, I leave no stone unturned. When it involves health, this idiom quadruples,” he wrote.

After seeing a specialist who was a breast consultant, the lump was diagnosed as a lipoma, which is a benign soft tissue tumour. However, due to its size, the specialist was concerned it could turn into a sarcoma, a cancerous malignant tumour.

Wright underwent an MRI to check the tumour further and was moved on to a sarcoma specialist.

“This specialist saw the scans around 10 days ago and today I was in theatre having this little git removed,” he said.

“His fast and incredible turnaround was due to the fact he did not want to leave it any longer and wanted it out to prevent the rare risk of a lipoma turning into a sarcoma over time.”

The tumour has been sent for further testing to determine if it was cancerous or not. Wright added: “This top doctor is certain from his incredible experience that we have done the job and there is nothing sinister to worry about. So I’m all good.

“Moral of the story: If you notice anything that doesn’t look or feel quite right. Don’t leave it. Nothing in life is more important than your health and wellbeing.

“Get checked, check yourself and make sure you take good care of yourself.”

So how do you know when to get a lump on your body checked out, and what are the different types?

When should I be concerned about a lump?

While most lumps and bumps that appear on the skin are normal, you should always keep an eye on them to see if any changes occur.

According to the NHS, lumps can be soft or hard to the touch, move around, be anywhere between the size of a pea to a golf ball, and can appear either under the skin or as a growth that hangs off the skin.

However, you should see a GP if the lump does not go away within two weeks, gets bigger or becomes inflamed. How the lump feels is also important, if it is hard and does not move, it should be checked out.

The location of the lump is particularly crucial. Lumps that appear in the breast, armpit or genital areas should always be checked out by a GP or at a sexual health clinic.

You should also see someone if you notice any swelling on the side of the neck, armpit or groin, as this could point towards a swollen gland.

What are the different types of lumps?

Lumps can appear in a number of different forms on the body.

A small, soft skin-coloured growth on the skin is usually a skin tag, which is common and harmless. These can be removed if they are bothering you.

A soft, squashy lump that appears under the skin could be a lipoma. Usually harmless, lipomas may move slightly under the skin if you press them, are not usually painful and grow slowly. They can appear anywhere on the body, usually on the shoulders, chest, arms, back, bottom or thighs.

Some lumps could be skin cysts, which are hard lumps that may move when you press it. They are usually harmless, and are sometimes confused with boils or skin abscesses.

However, the NHS warns that it can be difficult to tell whether a lump is a cyst or something else that might need treatment, so you should see a GP if one appears.

A skin abscess is usually painful and full of pus, caused by bacterial infection. They often appear alongside other symptoms of an infection, such as a high temperature and chills. They may need to be drained by a doctor and treated with antibiotics to clear the infection.

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