Tumorous Masses of the Hand
A variety of tumorous masses may affect hand and wrist. Different lumps and bumps may be present and in some cases they are benign and in some they are malign. Some of these changes can persist and stay the same size. On the other hand, lumps and bumps may enlarge in time. If these changes grow rapidly the person must consult a doctor as soon as possible. Even if the lumps or bumps do not grow but are persistent a doctor needs to be consulted.
The doctor will perform physical examination of the mass and apply certain imaging methods. X ray of the hand may discover changes in bones. However, MRI is the most convenient and most reliable imaging method as it can reveal all the changes present. It will give a perfect insight in what is going on in the hand. The doctor will additionally perform the biopsy of the tumorous mass and it will be examined pathohystologically.
Most Common Hand and Wrist Masses
Ganglion cysts are indeed the most common masses that affect hand. They are present in almost half of all the patients. They represent pockets filled with collection of joint fluid.
Giant cell tumor of tendon sheath is not an actual tumor. This is a solid mass that originates from a tendon sheath or from synovium. This change enlarges gradually and slowly and at some point starts to cause pain. Giant cell tumor of tendon sheath can be easily removed by simple surgical procedure. The problem is that it may reoccur.
Inclusion cyst is a consequence of the injury. It usually occurs years after the injury. Take penetrating injury for example. In it the cells that are present on the surface are pushed inside the wound. After certain period of time these cells can form an inclusion cyst.
Carpal boss is overgrowth of the hand bones. If occurs at the back of the hand and may resemble ganglion cyst but it is firmer than ganglion cyst.
Enchondroma is caused by excessive growth of the cartilage. Even though, this is a benign tumor it can cause pathologic fracture unless it has been surgically removed on time.
Apart from the benign formation hands can be affected by malignant lumps and bumps. The most common cancers that affect this body part are skin cancers including squam cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma and melanoma. Additionally, sarcomas of the connective tissues that are present under the skin may also occur. And in rather rare cases some cancers of distant organs give hand metastases.