There can be many possible causes for a lump in the neck. It could be caused by a skin condition, such as a cyst (SIST). Swelling of the thyroid, lymph or salivary glands can produce a lump, which could be anything from disease such as mumps to a more serious condition like tuberculosis. A lump can also mean a tumor, with the possibility of cancer. Whenever you discover a lump in your neck, a visit to an ear, nose and throat specialist should be a priority. If the cause is serious, immediate treatment may head off more serious problems. Even cancer can frequently be successfully treated if discovered in its early stages. If the cause is less serious, an examination can put your mind at ease. Determining the cause of a lump in the neck is the first stage of treatment.