beautiful gf2e1a28e8 1280

Cartilage Piercing Bump Vs. Keloid

If you notice a bump after a piercing, you should first look up cartilage piercing bump vs. keloid. It’s important to know that sometimes after getting a piercing, you might get a lump, which can either be a cartilage piercing bump or keloid.

The differences between cartilage piercing bump and keloid are pretty noticeable. For example, a cartilage piercing bump appears for a brief length of time. However, a keloid can last longer because it grows continuously. A cartilage piercing bump is also noticeably smaller compared to a keloid. 

Getting a piercing can be thrilling. But what happens if you find a suspicious bump in that area? It might be a cartilage piercing bump or keloid, which can be hard to distinguish. 

This article will go over the key distinctions between a cartilage piercing bump and a keloid. We also discuss viable treatment options for each.

The Difference Between a Cartilage Piercing Bump and a Keloid 

Although a cartilage piercing bump and a keloid can look similar, considerable differences exist. Continue reading to learn more about these differences. 


Cartilage piercing bumps appear as small lumps. While keloids look circular. They are also larger compared to cartilage piercing bumps.

However, the size of a cartilage piercing bump differs depending on the location and type of piercing, in contrast to a keloid, which may start off looking small but grow bigger with time.

Most commonly, a cartilage piercing bump will look pink. While a keloid will first appear as red or brown. The color will change over time, maybe becoming darker. The color may also vary based on its location and skin tone.

Keloids have a soft or sometimes rough texture, depending on the size. Other times, the keloid may feel spongy. Unlike cartilage piercing lumps, which can feel softer.



Your immune system’s reaction to a wound, such as a piercing, typically causes a cartilage piercing bump. This leads to swelling, which forms the cartilage piercing bump.

On the other hand, a keloid develops because of an overgrowth of fibrous tissue. An injury and skin cells are known as fibroblasts usually cause this. According to the American Medical Association, these cells create a large amount of collagen, forming keloid.


A cartilage piercing bump appears soon following a piercing and is usually temporary. In order words, it will not last more than a month. It will shrink over time until it eventually disappears. It may feel tender and sore.

On the flip side, a keloid can form between 3 to 12 months after the piercing. According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, it grows gradually over weeks, months, or even years.


The location of a cartilage piercing bump vs. keloid dramatically differs. Typically, a cartilage piercing bump is at the actual site of the piercing.

You might sometimes find it underneath the earring. While a keloid will probably extend beyond the piercing area since it grows gradually.


Cartilage piercing bumps are caused by your body’s immune system’s response to a wound. As a result, they’ll rarely require invasive treatment. However, you can clean the area to avoid further infections and allow it to heal correctly.


Most people believe applying alcohol to the area is a good treatment plan. However, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, it can slow down the recovery process.

Instead, keep the area clean and dry. Avoid constantly touching the area or removing it frequently because this can introduce bacteria. Which can lead to an infection.

Unlike treating a cartilage piercing bump, there are various ways to treat keloids. First, you can start with corticosteroids. This is a prescribed drug that can reduce the size of keloids. According to AAD, you’ll need at least four injections each week for 4 weeks for effective treatment. 

For a more invasive treatment, you can opt for surgical removal. But, it’s important to note that it is not a permanent solution. The keloids can return.

Laser treatment is also a good option. It helps to the reduction of the keloid. However, you will need a couple of sessions to reduce it completely, costing thousands of dollars.

Finally, you can try cryotherapy. Unfortunately, t is less effective on bigger keloids. Cryotherapy involves freezing the keloid until it softens and gets smaller. It is not the cause of treatment for people with dark skin because it causes hyperpigmentation.

Key Takeaways 

Cartilage bumps and keloids are very different. However, the one thing cartilage piercing bumps and keloids have in common is that they both occur after a piercing.

Keloids grow bigger over time, whereas cartilage piercing bumps are small and do not grow. When in doubt, consult a doctor immediately. This can help minimize the risk of long-term adverse effects.

If you suspect that you may have a keloid, it’s best to visit a doctor on the best treatment plan for keloids.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top
Scroll to Top