Other neck lumps may be due to branchial cysts which are remnants from embryonic developments occurring high in the neck a few centimetres below the ear. They are usually straight forward to diagnose although a scan may be required to confirm the diagnosis. Cancerous lumps can sometimes be mistaken for branchial cysts particularly in middle age. Branchial cysts are usually removed surgically as they can get infected.
Thyroglossal duct cysts usually lie in the midline and are also remnants of embryonic development. They are best removed as they can also repeatedly get infected.
Other less common causes of neck lumps include laryngocoeles, lymphangiomas, dermoids, carotid artery swellings, nerve swellings in the neck (neuromas) and benign sternomastoid tumour of infancy. Lipomas (localised fat swellings) may occur anywhere in the head and neck region. Some of these neck lumps require special expertise (which Mr Olarinde has) to diagnose and treat.