Synonyms: Pulmonary nodules
Medical Specialties: Internal medicine, Oncology, Pulmonology
A lung nodule is a rounded opacity surrounded by lung parenchyma. It is equal to or less than 3 centimeters in diameter and usually well marginated. Lung nodules may be benign tumors, such as a hamartoma or a malignancy. Growths larger than 3 centimeters are generally classified as masses and suspected to be malignancies until otherwise proven.
A lung nodule is a small, round growth on the lung that is less than 3 centimeters in diameter. Growths larger than 3 centimeters are usually classified differently and are considered masses. A lung nodule may sometimes be referred to as a spot on the lung. It may be an “incidental finding” on a chest X-ray or CT scan; meaning the scan was done for a different reason, but a nodule was detected when the radiologist reviewed the image.
Although a nodule or spot on the lung sounds serious and can be cancerous, it can also have several other causes that are not cancer. Lung nodules can develop as a result of past infections and scar tissue formation. Certain disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis and sarcoidosis, can also cause lung nodules.