Pain Concern
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herberden nodes or something else?

I have these painful lumps on my fingers that appear after injury to the finger, I have 3 in total. Only one of them is really painful however, the other 2 don't bother me much.

The location on the lumps is on the dip joint, result of fingers getting caught in the gi during judo practice.

The big thing here is, it doesn't show up on an xray. Comparing to images of herberden nodes i would say it is really similar. Can be seen on the finger but not by xray.

Things that I have discarded already

Gout- Tests show normal

Rheumatoid factor- was 8 a few years ago and it's about 13 now, 14 would be the reference range.

Cysts- they feel hard, almost calcium like and can't really be pressed down.

-I'm just scratching my head at this whole situation, have been to rheumatologist and hand surgeon. I asked if maybe a biopsy could be taken, he said that was not possible.

4 Replies

My son has a lump like that too. Our regular GP said that he could see why people might think they are a hard boney lump, but that it was just a ganglion cyst which can sometimes feel really hard. It sounds like you already have your answer, even if it is one that doesn't make sense to you.


I think i may have gotten to the bottom of it, i urged my doctor to test my pth , calcium, magnesium, and vit d. My pth (normal-high calcium) is elevated usually indicative of a parathyroid tumor. Normocalcemic hyperparathyroidism, im going to an endocrine doctor to see if i can get a referral to a surgeon.


I had a feeling it was something systemic because it was affecting all my ligaments/ soft tissues. There was usually no sign of joint dmg or osteoarthritis, it didnt attack in flares like gout. It didn't feel like a cyst, cysts you can usually push down on to get the joint fluid back into the joint(my mom has had one before and i just taped a coin about the size of the cyst to it and it dissappeared)


I was given all sorts of diagnosis like fibromyalgia and osteoarhtitis and ive tried just about any antiinflammatory known to man, i will update after i see the endo, maybe this journey will help others. I encourage everyone with high or calcium within the norm but high, 9.4+, to have their pth tested if they have undiagnosed back pain etc, or unexplained nodules on joints. Calcific tendonitis, osteoporosis, pseudogout are all synonymous with high pth


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