Dozens of conditions can cause lumps to develop on top of the feet. Depending on the cause, the lumps can be painful, soft, hard, or of various sizes. Many people associate lump development with tumors and cancer, but this often is not the case for lumps on the tops of the feet. Though there are preventative options and home treatments available for some of these conditions, nothing replaces professional medical assistance.


1. Ganglion Cysts

Round lumps filled with fluid can develop along the tendons and joints of the foot. These are ganglion cysts and can grow as large as an inch across. Sometimes the lumps are visible, though smaller lesions may not be. Ganglion cysts cause discomfort and pain, especially when socks or shoes rub against them. Additionally, the cysts can develop on top of the foot, around the toes, or along the ankle. It is uncommon for ganglion cysts to grow on the soles or heels of the feet.

cysts lumps Jan-Otto / Getty Images

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