The right supraclavicular lymph node is located on the right side in the hollow above the clavicle, just lateral to where it joins the sternum. It drains the mediastinum, lungs, esophagus. Common causes of enlargement include lung, retroperitoneal or gastrointestinal cancer. The left supraclavicular lymph node is located on the left side in the hollow above the clavicle, just lateral to where it joins the sternum. It drains the thorax, abdomen via thoracic duct. Common causes of enlargement include lymphoma, thoracic or retroperitoneal cancer, bacterial or fungal infection.Nodes are generally considered to be normal if they are up to 1 cm in diameter; however, some authors suggest that epitrochlear nodes larger than 0.5 cm or inguinal nodes larger than 1.5 cm should be considered abnormal [1,2]. An increase in nodal size on serial examinations is significant.
Certain areas of lymph node enlargement are more disconcerting than others. This would be the reasoning for your physician wanting an evaluation with diagnostic studies. The results should provide direction into the causative factor for your symptoms. We hope all is well and best wishes.
Theresa Jones, RN
1. Libman H. Generalized lymphadenopathy. J Gen Intern Med 1987;2:48-58.
2. Morland B. Lymphadenopathy. Arch Dis Child 1995; 73:476-9.