Lumps that form in your earlobe are localized area of swelling. Other terms that can be used to describe the various types of lumps include bump, nodule, tumor and cyst. These lumps can be as a result of a number of conditions, including infections, inflammation, tumors or trauma. As per the cause, a lump in earlobe may be single or multiple, soft or firm, painful or painless. They may grow rapidly or may not change in size.

Pimples that form in your ear have common areas where they appear which include your ear canal, ear lobe, and behind your ear. Also, they can be caused by exostoses and osteomas, which are types of tumors that grow in the bones of the ear canal. Ear lumps caused by infection, inflammation or trauma are usually temporary and subside as the underlying condition resolves. Those that persist or continue to grow over time may signal more serious conditions, such as tumors.

You may get a lump around ear that is associated with a head injury may signal bleeding in the brain or another emergency and may have life-threatening complications. Seek immediate medical care if you happen to have such kinds of lumps on your head.

Lump in Earlobe Symptoms

Lump in earlobe symptom

Lump in earlobe

Lump formed on your earlobe may be accompanied by other symptoms, depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. There are some problems that can result on lump on the earlobe that can cause issues in other areas of the body.  A lump inside earlobe may be accompanied by other localized symptoms such as:

  • Itching
  • Pus or discharge
  • Redness, warmth or swelling
  • Tenderness or pain

Serious symptoms that might indicate a life-threatening condition

  • Cough
  • Fever and chills
  • Headache
  • Joint stiffness and pain
  • Runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Sweating
  • Unexplained weight loss

In some cases, the lump on the earlobe may occur with other symptoms, which might indicate a serious or life-threatening condition that should be evaluated immediately in an emergency room.

  • Change in level of consciousness or alertness, such as passing out or unresponsiveness
  • Change in mental status or sudden behavior change, such as confusion, delirium, lethargy, hallucinations and delusions
  • Profuse or uncontrollable bleeding

Lump in Earlobe Causes

When you develop a lump in your earlobe it can cause you a lot of discomfort and anxiety to want to know what could have caused its appearance. Some lumps in your earlobe are usually not serious but if your condition case you more trouble make an appointment with your physician to find out what could have caused it since there are many different things that can result to these bumps. Since most of these causes are no severe, for that reason many people do not seek medication.

  1. Acne

Simply, acne is usually a localized skin inflammation that occurs because of increased activities in the oil glands that are located at the base of your hair follicles. These pimple-like bumps can occur in any part of your body but it is mostly observed on your neck, hands, face, etc. that are usually exposed to the atmosphere. Your earlobes are not an exception either as they are usually always exposed.

  1. Piercing

This can be described as the main reason why your earlobe has a lump. A number of people have pierced ears and this can result to the earlobe being injured due to sudden disturbance of the skin when the needle penetrates through it. In this case, apart from the lump you may see redness, accompanied with discomfort from a burning sensation and pain.

  1. Folliculitis

This is the inflammation of the hair follicles on your skin which occurs when an infection resulting from micro-organisms which penetrates the skin after injury. Although this condition commonly occurs on the scalp it can affect your earlobe as well.

  1. Cancer

Though in rare cases, a lump in earlobe can be originated from cancer. Cancer usually forms on any part of the skin and your earlobe skin has no exception either. The condition usually begins in a cell tissue in the earlobe which starts to multiply itself slowly and growing into a full bump. The tumor that forms on your earlobe is usually painless and it keeps increasing in size. In this case, you need to contact your doctor immediately.

  1. Clogged sebaceous gland
Lump in earlobe causes

Bump in earlobe

This is also referred to as sebaceous cyst which is usually a benign. A cyst is usually filled with oil and dead skin cells and it is painless unless it becomes infected. This type of cyst can develop on the earlobe as well appearing like a lump.

  1. Epidermoid cysts

These are small bumps that develop under your skin and are easily moved around using your fingers. These types of cysts can turn into cancer, therefore if you realize they do not disappear in a week or two you should have it evaluated by your physician to rule out cancer.

  1. Allergic reaction to some metal

One can developed a lump in earlobe immediately after wearing an earring made from the offending metal. This will occur if you are allergic to the metal used to manufacture the earring. Due to your body’s reactive histamines, the lump in your earlobe is usually painful.

  1. Poor Personal Hygiene

Poor personal hygiene is also a major cause of lump in ear i.e. touching the inner part of the ears with hands that are dirty or using dirty cell phones and dirty earplugs.

Additionally, scratching your ears with nails, unwashed hair, and unwashed hair products that are not clean can lead to the development of lumps on earlobe. It is this poor personal hygiene practices that provide bacteria with a good breeding ground, which results to the pimples. It is also possible for dirt to clog the pores on the ears and this will lead to pimples.

  1. Winter and Summer Weather

According to Mayo Clinic, acne prone skin is similar to any other skin, which means that summer weather could lead to pimples. Also, the cold weather experienced during the winter season combined with indoor heating may cause dryness of the skin. When the skin becomes dry, you start getting pimples, and not just on your earlobes, but on other body parts as well.

  1. Occlusive Clothing and Helmets

Wearing clothes and helmets that trap moisture around your ears provide bacteria with ideal ground for breeding. When the bacteria are trapped inside the skin pores, it could lead to a pimple or a lump in earlobe. You should, therefore, avoid wearing occlusive clothing as well as helmets.

Other causes of rash or pimples on earlobe at a glance

  • Wearing woolen hats
  • Use of poor cosmetic products
  • Beach sand
  • Taking medications such as birth control pills
  • Diets that have too much-refined sugars
  • Stress
  • Allergic reactions to medicines, foods, pets, and dander

Lump in Ear Lobe Cancer

As we have stated above, be careful when dealing with lumps on your earlobe that can be cancerous. In numerous studies, it has been revealed that cancerous lumps and bumps are not usually painful. In some conditions it could be some kind of cyst that needs to be drained and treated with simple antibiotics. When draining is involved it could be some kind of infection going on which really needs checking out and could be treated.

If it is a big old infection going on there it would certainly give you a bad feeling. You need to get a diagnosis before you know what causes the lump in earlobe. It is not a matter of ethnicity – you need to get to the doctor and ask what is going on with your ear.

Sometimes when people get a lump that won’t go away; they just conclude it is cancer. It could be infections, or inflammations or all of that kind. However, if the lump keeps on progressing to the worse state you have to be careful with what you are dealing with. Put yourself on the safe side by letting your doctor have a look at it.

Lump in Earlobe near Piercing

Lump in earlobe piercing

Lump near earlobe piercing

Infection in body piercings is commonly caused by the transfer of microorganisms from dirty hands to the piercing site, according to research findings. Other contaminants that may cause infection come from contact with bodily fluids or unsanitary water. Developing a lump in earlobe is one of the major signs that your earlobe is infected. A part from that, your earlobe may also feel warm to the touch.

A lot of people may complain of bumps on their piercings few days or even many years after piercing was done. While proper care usually keeps these from forming, sometimes a piercing gets a bump with the best of care. Identifying the bump and treating it can reduce pain, and help your piercing heal faster.

The reasons behind getting a bump could be always different, from non – sterilized equipment to non-professional aftercare treatment. If you develop a bump at the site of a body piercing, draining it should never be done by yourself.

A lump in earlobe, especially if the site turns red, swollen or painful, or drains pus, could indicate a staphylococcus infection or other bacteria. See your doctor immediately; the doctor might choose to drain the bump and send the fluid for testing to determine the type of bacteria present. In the meantime, your doctor might start you on an oral antibiotic.

Any time you create a wound in the skin like a body piercing, you run the risk of developing an infection. The risk increases if the equipment used to create the opening isn’t scrupulously cleaned and sterilized between uses. Signs of an infection of a pierced ear are tenderness, a yellow discharge, redness, and some swelling.

The most common causes of infection are piercing the ears with unsterile equipment, inserting unsterile posts, or frequently touching the earlobes with dirty hands.

Lumps in Earlobe that come and go

Earlobe infections can cause lumps on your ear that comes and go away. Many types of infections cause the lymph nodes behind and below the ears near the jawbone to enlarge and feel like lumps. Traumatic causes of lumps range from bug bites to severe injuries that can produce localized collection of blood in the tissues.

Also, benign and malignant tumors of the skin, soft tissues, or organs can sometimes feel like lumps and they may appear for some time and disappear. In these cases, either a biopsy or surgical removal of the lump can determine whether cancer is present.

Cysts, which are fluid-filled, sac-like structures that can form in various parts of the body, often feel like a lump in earlobe. Some cysts may be present at birth, while others develop as a result of inflammation, tumors, or wear and tear over time. Sebaceous cysts are benign lumps filled with pus, dead skin cells, and excess oil.

Sebaceous Cyst Earlobe

It is usually normal to develop lumps in and around your earlobe called cysts. They are similar in appearance to pimples, but they are different. Some sebaceous cyst in your earlobe does not need treatment. If the cyst causes pain, or does not disappear, you should seek the help of a medical professional.

How to identify sebaceous cyst on earlobe

A sebaceous cyst is a sack-like lump in earlobe made of dead skin cells. Usually, it is small, smooth bump under the skin, similar to a blemish. It may vary in color from matching your skin pigmentation to red. Usually they are no bigger than the size of a pea. But you should watch them to see if they change in size.

A sebaceous cyst is almost always benign and should cause no problems other than being a minor cosmetic issue or small distraction. However, it can feel uncomfortable if your headphones rub against it.

What causes an earlobe sebaceous cyst?

  1. An epidermoid cyst occurs when epidermis cells that should have been shed get deeper into your skin and multiply. These cells form the walls of the cyst and secrete keratin, which fills up the cyst.
  2. Also, damaged hair follicles or oil glands can cause them. Cysts also often tend to run in families, or can form for no reason. They occur in most people at some point. However, they are generally no cause for concern.

How to Get Rid of Lump in Ear

Often, common lumps in your earlobe will resolve on their own but if they do not or start to become larger and more painful it is time to see your physician. If the lump in earlobe does not resolve on its own your physician can treat it with steroids in order to reduce the inflammation or remove it surgically using a small incision.

There are some lumps in earlobe that be removed with lasers. It is not uncommon for the lump in earlobe to come back in the same location even after having them surgically removed.

A reddened bump doesn’t always mean infection. In some cases, inflammation can develop at the site from irritation from the piercing rather than infection. With inflammation, the redness is usually localized, improves with time, doesn’t spread and doesn’t have a foul smell. Draining an inflamed bump won’t help at all, since it doesn’t contain infected material. Injecting the bump with cortisone often helps reduce inflammation, although you might need more than one treatment, depending on the size of the inflamed area.

No one wants to walk around with a pimple on or inside earlobe, especially given that some of them look very bad. As such, you can always try the following home remedies when dealing with pimple on ear.

  1. Tea Tree Oil

It is beneficial to oil that contains many anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. The properties are vital in helping deal with various health problems such as a cough, toenail fungus, acne, and lump in earlobe. It is also great for dealing with sebaceous cyst, which is one of the causes of pimple on ear.

When treating pimple on earlobe, you will need to apply the tea tree oil directly on to it. The oil will provide a protective layer for the earlobe and will help in fighting against any infection. Alternatively, you can also use diluted tea tree oil by mixing is with water and apply the mixture thrice a day on the affected area.

  1. Aloe Vera
Lump in earlobe remedies

Using aloe Vera to get rid of earlobe bumps

This is an excellent remedy for dealing with pimple on earlobes. It not only contains pain-relieving properties, but it is also able to heal infected pimples. Apply the Aloe Vera gel directly to your pimple on earlobe and you will experience a cool feeling that will relieve the irritation. To remove the impurities, make sure to drink Aloe Vera Juice on a regular basis

  1. Warm Compress

A warm compress is vital for addressing issues such as pimple on earlobe. If you want to do away with the pimple on earlobe, practice the hot compress method at home. The method will help in draining any pus or fluids that are in the lump in earlobe. Make sure that the compress is of medium heat as a hot compress may provide a breeding ground for bacteria.

  1. Honey

Honey combined with yogurt works like a very good wound dresser. When treating pimple on earlobe, just put a wheatgrass in a blender and blend it with some honey in a paste and apply directly to the pimple to stay overnight. In the morning wash it off for better results.

Additional Home Remedies for Pimple on Earlobe

Below are other factors to consider when nursing or taking care of a lump in earlobe at home. It is also important to note that if these pimples won’t go away, seek medical advice for proper diagnosis. It is okay to use home remedies and in most cases the pimples should clear up before you know it. But if they persist seek medical advice.

  • The first thing you need to take to get rid of the pimple on earlobe is to ensure that you maintain strict hygiene and cleanliness levels. Make sure to clean that area each day. Once clean, pat it dry and do not let it stay damp
  • Do not fidget with the pimples at any time as this may lead to further infection
  • Make sure you do not use hair products that are greasy as they can aggravate the acne
  • For the duration of the pimple on earlobe, you will need to change the pillowcases on your bed at least three times a week to ward off any hair oil that may have got to the pillows when sleeping
  • Increase your vitamin A intake by consuming foods that are rich in this vitamin such as carrots, papaya, pumpkin and spinach and those rich in Vitamin C as well such as oranges, mangoes, tomatoes, and peppers.
  • Drink lots of water each day. When you take water, it helps in cleansing your blood stream and in the process eliminates the toxins that have built up in your body, thereby accelerating the skin healing process.
  • To eliminate acne, Zinc is another element that you will need to take in plenty. You should hold necessary consultations with your dermatologist before starting an intake of the supplement. Alongside the zinc, you may also want to step up your intake of cashews, walnuts, as well as oysters. All these are packed with zinc.

Lump in earlobe or Pimple in Ear Canal

You need to be very careful with the pimple in your ear canal. Although its causes are similar to the others, with a big pimple in your canal, there is the likelihood that your hearing could get affected.

Additionally, popping it inside your ear is not recommended as there are delicate parts found in your ear, and they could easily be damaged. You must, therefore, avoid sticking sharp objects into the ears in an attempt to pop the pimple.

Even though popping a pimple is not recommended, many people still prefer using this method at hone to get rid of pimple on earlobe.

More references

  1. Ear lump causes:
  2. Earlobe cyst:
  3. Lump in earlobe:
  4. Earlobe cancer:
  5. Piercing infection:
  6. How to get rid of pimples in ear: