Benign refers to a condition, tumour or growth that is not cancerous. This means that it does not spread to other parts of the body. It does not invade nearby tissue. Sometimes, a condition is called benign to suggest it is not dangerous or serious.
In general, a benign tumour grows slowly and is not harmful. However, this is not always the case.
A benign tumour may grow big enough or be found near blood vessels, the brain, nerves or organs. As a result, it can cause problems locally without spreading to another part of the body. Sometimes, these problems can be serious.
The opposite of benign is malignant.
Hall JE. Genetic control of protein synthesis, cell function, and cell reproduction. In: Hall JE, ed. Guyton and Hall Textbook of Medical Physiology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 3.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of any other sites. Content provided by A.D.A.M and is prepared for the United States of America. Recommended treatments may not be applicable, available, or permissible in Canada or other jurisdictions. A.D.A.M. is accredited by URAC, also known as the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (www.urac.org). URAC’s accreditation program is an independent audit to verify that A.D.A.M. follows rigorous standards of quality and accountability. A.D.A.M. is also a founding member of Hi-Ethics and subscribes to the principles of the Health on the Net Foundation (www.hon.ch