Should I be worried that my son was born with a lump on the back of his head?

Q: My baby's birth was long and hard, and my son came out with a squishy lump on the back of his head. Should I be concerned?

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A: Probably not. It sounds like your baby has a cephalohematoma, a bruise between the skull bones and the overlying tissue. It's usually caused by a hard delivery, or by a forceps or vacuum delivery, and should heal within a few weeks. As it does, the blood will calcify from the edges first, leading to a volcano-like bump with a soft center. I've read that some complications can occur with cephalohematomas, such as fractures and infections. But I see newborns with these bumps many times each year and have never encountered such problems. Sometimes babies with cephalohematomas do get a bit more jaundiced, but there are no other issues to be concerned about.

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