Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Hand FAQ


I have a lump in my palm that I can feel my heart beat in. It developed about two weeks ago when I accidentally poked a nail through my palm. I was treated in the emergency room but I haven't seen anyone since. What should I do about this? Would soaking help? Should I use hot or cold water?


A pulsing mass in the palm of the hand sounds suspiciously like an aneurysm. An aneurysm is a blood-filled bulge caused by a weak, damaged, or injured blood vessel. There are two types of blood vessels: veins carrying blood back to the heart and arteries carrying blood from the heart to the tissues. Aneurysms affect the arteries.

The bulge in a blood vessel is like an over-inflated balloon, It can burst causing serious problems from blood loss. The larger an aneurysm gets, the more likely it is to burst. Aneurysms can be treated so it's best to see a doctor for follow-up.

Don't try to treat yourself until you do see a physician. The area may need to be drained and cleaned. The bleeding must be stopped so that the aneurysm can heal. Medications to stop the bleeding and improve blood clotting may be prescribed. Unless there are other health issues, healing should occur fairly quickly. Yury A. Slesarenko, MD, et al. False Aneurysm of the Superficial Palmar Arch Causing Acute Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. In Orthopedics. June 2007. Vol. 30. No. 6. Pp. 493-494.

*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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