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Question: Swollen lymph node and hard lump under ear

 Lucita - Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:12 pm

I am a 23 year old female with no serious medical history or surgeries to speak of. For the past 6-7 weeks I have had a swollen lymph node on the left side of my neck about an inch under my chin. It is not visibly noticable but feels smooth and rubbery when touched, is bean shaped and about 2cm in size. It moves around when I touch it. It is not painful but I'm very 'aware' of it and the left side of my neck aches. I went to see my doctor when I first noticed it, he said I had a viral infection and it would go away on its own, even though I had no other real signs of infection eg. sore throat, aches etc. 7 weeks later and it is still there, although it hasn't got any bigger it is still causing discomfort and I have also noticed the appearance of a small hard flat mass right under my left ear (the same side as the swollen node). I have been to see another doctor to get a second opinion who told me she couldn't feel anything abnormal and that glands sometimes stay swollen for a long time after infection. I have had a blood test and this came back normal. I am frustrated as I still have no answer or diagnosis and neither doctor I have seen seems to be concerned about my this. Please could you suggest what this may be caused by and if I should push for further tests to set my mind at rest. Thanks!
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Fri Apr 27, 2007 10:36 pm

User avatar It sounds as if you have a reactive lymph node. Typically lymph nodes will swell during an infection. Subsequently, they may or may not return to their original size.

Your description is quite consistent with reactive lymph nodes. Typically, these lymph nodes are mobile and rubbery feeling.

If the node continues to enlarge and becomes painful it may have a bacterial infection within the node. This condition may require antibiotics to improve. A little pain may be associated with the original infection but the pain should not persist.

If you have seen your doctor who does not feel there is an infection there it is likely that your lymph node should begin to improve soon. If it continues to be painful you should follow up with your doctor.
 Lucita - Mon Apr 30, 2007 11:41 am

Thanks for your advice, its set my mind at rest a little. The pain is still persisting slightly but seems to be under control with ibuprofen, and the node itself is not increasing in size which is a comfort. I am seeing an ENT doctor tomorrow to get it checked out properly to make sure it's not problematic so hopefully I will be ok. Thanks again.

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