Medical Specialty >> Oncology

Doctors Lounge - Oncology Answers

Back to Oncology Answers List

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Doctors Lounge ( does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Site.

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician. Please read our 'Terms and Conditions of Use' carefully before using this site.

Date of last update: 10/21/2017.

Forum Name: Esophageal Cancer

Question: Trouble Swallowing & Swollen Lymph Nodes

 d_vinity - Sat Jan 21, 2006 4:57 pm

Hello, I am a 22 year old female. I had noticed a tightness in my throat and trouble swallowing about a year and a half ago. I had an upper GI barium swallowing study and CT scan. I was told that both looked normal. Then I was given an allergy test to see if I was allergic to any foods, but the only thing I am allergic to is pollen and cats. Not much after these tests I noticed that my lymph nodes were quite swollen. They are still swollen and they have not reduced in size in over a year, yet I haven't really had any colds or sicknesses. It doesn't hurt, but the trouble swallowing has increased. It constantly feels like there is something stuck in my throat. My doctor doesn't really have any other ideas. I am wondering if anyone has any ideas of what this could be and if there are any other tests that I should pursue.

Thanks a lot for your help.

P.S. I don't know if this could be related, but I was a smoker for about 3 years in my teens.
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Fri Jul 14, 2006 5:36 pm

User avatar Dear d_vinity,

Sore throat causes throat pain that can be severe and sometimes is felt as a lump or tightness in the throat with difficult swallowing and bad breathing.

Experts says that a sore throat that lasts for longer than a week or recurrent pharyngitis is often caused by allergies, or exposure to humidity, smoking, irritation from heating and cooling systems.

Allergic pharyngitis usually occurs seasonally or all year long and the allergic individual wake up early in the morning with sore throat.

The principal in treatment in such cases is to avoid exposure to the expected allergens as possible.

Regarding the enlarged lymph nodes LNS,
enlarged LNS due to inflammatory process may decrease in size with time or remain of the same size but they do not disappear completely.

Other possible causes for the swallowing difficulty and the sensation of lump in the throat include:

- (Spastic esophageal motility disorders) Sometimes the same symptoms represents a spasm and In appropriate contraction of the esophagus.

- People with GERD will experience one or more of these symptoms,
swallowing problems
Chest pain,
Pain in the throat,
Morning hoarseness, and
Discomfort in the chest

Others may experience a feeling like the food stuck in their throat or tightness in the throat, dry Cough and Shortness of breath. These symptoms are mainly due to inflammation of the esophagus(esophagus)

Certain foods are known to aggravate the condition, and you better avoid them. These include chocolate, beverages containing caffeine, fatty and fried foods, garlic and onions, spicy and tomato containing foods.

Diagnosis is made by complete history taking, physical examination, investigations like Upper endoscopy, Manometric studies, and other lab tests that can be recommended by the doctor accordingly.

- Psychological or emotional stress and anxiety, in these cases the diagnosis is made by exclusion of other causes.

My advice to follow up with your doctor, update him with your symptoms, by complete history and physical examination, he can recommend the proper medical approach.

Best regards,

| Check a doctor's response to similar questions

Are you a Doctor, Pharmacist, PA or a Nurse?

Join the Doctors Lounge online medical community

  • Editorial activities: Publish, peer review, edit online articles.

  • Ask a Doctor Teams: Respond to patient questions and discuss challenging presentations with other members.

Doctors Lounge Membership Application

Tools & Services: Follow DoctorsLounge on Twitter Follow us on Twitter | RSS News | Newsletter | Contact us