Pyogenic granuloma

Definition

Pyogenic granulomas are small, raised, red bumps on the skin. The bumps have a smooth surface and may be moist. They bleed easily because of the high number of blood vessels at the site.

Alternative Names

Lobular capillary hemangioma

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

The exact cause of pyogenic granulomas is unknown. They often appear following an injury on the hands, arms, or face.

Pyogenic granulomas are common in children.

Symptoms

  • Small red vascular lump that bleeds easily
  • Often found at site of recent injury
  • Usually seen on hands, arms, and face, but may develop in the mouth (most often in pregnant women)

Signs and tests

Your health care provider will do a physical exam to diagnose this condition. You may also need a skin biopsy to confirm the diagnosis.

Treatment

Small pyogenic granulomas may go away suddenly. Larger bumps are treated with surgery, electrocautery, freezing, or lasers.

Expectations (prognosis)

Most pyogenic granulomas can be removed. A scar may remain after treatment. There is a high chance that the problem will come back if the whole granuloma is not destroyed during treatment.

Complications

  • Bleeding from the granuloma
  • Return of the condition after treatment

Calling your health care provider

Call your health care provider if you have a skin bump that bleeds easily or that changes appearance.

References

Habif TP. Vascular tumors and malformations. In: Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 5th ed. St. Louis, Mo: Mosby Elsevier; 2009:chap 23.

North PE, Kincannon J. In: Bolognia JL, Jorizzo JL, Schaffer JV, et al, eds.Dermatology. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2012:chap 114.

 

Review Date:11/20/2012

Reviewed by:Kevin Berman, MD, PhD, Atlanta Center for Dermatologic Disease, Atlanta, GA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.

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