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Date of last update: 10/21/2017.

Forum Name: Lymphoma

Question: enlarged lymph nodes sternum and hyroid goitre

 GEEBOP1 - Tue Oct 09, 2007 7:29 am

29 year old female.
had enlarged lymph nodes for quite a while now over 2 years when i found first one on right side of neck then over time they came up like this under right armpit right side groin left side groin left side armpit and left side neck then under both sides of jaw and below both earlobes and directly under my chin. i also have a thyroid goitre but l tests ruled out infection and thyroid problem and i was told it was just reactive lymp nodes, i don't know what this means?
also i now have an itchy rash for the past 8 weeks thought it was just allergy seems worse at night when i wake up hot although i feel cold all day, thought rash was then just heat rash. lost weight and appetite, feels like a tablet/pill is stuck in my throat when i swallow and voice keeps going hoarse. gp thinks my throat looks sore although it feels fine to me. my sternum seems quite large to me not sure how big i should be? i am really tired all the time but put that down to anaemia because of heavy menstrual cycles, i have had the female sterilisation after 4 children so put tiredness down to that aswell, although my youngest child is 2 years old and sleeps all night like my other children i never feel like i have enough sleep. as soon as i eat i feel my eyes getting heavier. no family history of anything like this or cancers that i know of. i have looked for information on the web and found a few things but not sure what i should be asking my gp to check as i'm now really worried it could be something more serious. had some blood tests taken last week with gp had to fast for it and will get the results in 3 weeks.
is there a test that will tell me for definate if this is cancer or something bad? i read the only way to know for sure is lymph node biopsy? what does this involve? and should i ask my gp to refer me for this?
also just above my tyroid goitre is a small lump above right if you were looking at me between my chun and thyroid not sure if this is another lymph node or not?
please give any helpful advice
many thanks
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Tue Oct 09, 2007 4:54 pm

User avatar Hi Geebop1,

I would recommend you see your doctor about these lymph nodes. I'm less likely to think that this is cancer given how slowly this is progressing; however, this does not rule it out.

You are correct that the best way to find out why the lymph nodes are swollen is via a lymph node biopsy. This is actually quite a simple procedure. Often, a small biopsy needle (one that allows part to be removed with it) is inserted into an enlarged node and removed, bringing a piece of the node with it. The area is numbed so it is basically a painless procedure. The risks are fairly minimal. Your doctor can go through the specifics of how they do the procedure and the risks so you will be fully informed to make a decision about this.

Having a biopsy may be quite helpful for you.

Best wishes.
 GEEBOP1 - Mon Feb 18, 2008 10:25 am

thanks for your advice, i went to see my gp who told me to go back after 2 weeks if there was no change in my voice and swollen lymph nodes, did a blood test for infections all cam back clear so reffered me to ent.
he performed fna and din't get enough sample so redid the test on a lymph node under my arm as it felt bigger about 4cm still didnt get enough sample so now referred me to breast dr ? he wishes to redo fna with aid of ultra sound but has mentioned an open biopsy because of the size. had a good feel att all my nodes and they're all up and painless some i hadn't noticed too as they grow gradually over time and never hurt. over xmas i had a alcoholic drink as i don't drink alcohol often and noticed a pain in my neck before i'd finished my drink, not a fast drinker though. told the dr this and he doesn't seem to listen or give me any answers. i have been having night sweats too every morning between 4-30 and 6-30 am i wake up too hot and all the back of neck is wet , so this is making me feel even more tired than usual. dr says as i have 4 kids theres no surprise i am tired alot but they don't make me tired if you know what i mean. it feels like i cant get through to them how worried i am , and they just say it could be anything when i ask them what it is most likely to be. one of the drs seemed really concerned but the breast doctor doesn't.
i have a lump on the front of my throat looks like a mans adams apple i thought this was my thyroid gland but dr says thyroid is further down, and that he thinks its a lymph node.
i guess i'm just wondering what to d next?
should i be concerned?
how big should lymph nodes be? and is it normal to feel them all. they never get smaller or hurt.
have we got lymph nodes on the bottom of our backs? just aboove the flat part, i noticed i have 2 small ish lumps there that feel like my other nodes, forgot to mention them when i saw dr.
is there a dr that specialises in lymph nodes? and what are they called? nobody seems to know and i'm getting fed up of being passed around different departments that keep scratching their heads.
thank you once again and i will keep you informed of any new developments, its just waiting for the appointments.
 1966BMW - Mon Mar 17, 2008 3:15 pm

I am not an MD, just a curious reader who also to no avail can get an answer from a doctor as to what is wrong w/ me.

Has anyone done a chest x-ray on you to see if there are any abnormalities?
Any lab work performed? Red cells, lymphocytes, etc, etc?

I have a Thyroid goiter that has no hot spots and my Thyroid labs are all over the place and they still can't figure it out. I produce antibodies that are being ignored. I too have night sweats and then freeze and then sweat. My voice comes and goes all day w/ this annoying, persistant little kid cough. I am always asked, "Do you have allergies? Do you have a cold?" NO I DO NOT.

I could go on and on! Let me know what you find out.

 GEEBOP1 - Tue Mar 18, 2008 5:55 pm

hi thanks for replying. i have had no chest x-ray or other test to check internal nodes, feels like i am banging my head against a wall lol.
i had a recent biopsy on one of my axillary nodes (underarm) because Drs felt this was one of my larger ones altough they didn't check my groins and i have them there too. this is what the Dr then said last seen bilateral breast axillary ultrasound which revealed normal breast tissue and several prominent lymph nodes in both axillae all of which have preserved fatty hilum but with thickened core disease. these features are benign reactive type pattern. ultrasound guided core biopsy was performed on the largest palpable node in the right axilla and histology reavealed features consistent with a reactive lymph node and no evidence of malignancy
from all the blood tests i have had done there has been no evidence of any infection, virus , bug or parasite, not even hiv.
i have been left to now go home with reactive lymph nodes that never get any smaller and i am made to feel i am imagining other symptoms.
i have searched endlessy for info on reactive lymph nodes and treatment but not had much success. As for my voice being hoarse and difficulty swallowing they assume it is something called globus pharyngeas? again no info or treatment. like yourself i too get asked if i have a sore throat or cold so i know its not all in my head lol. i can live with most of my lumps if i can hide them but the ones at the front of my throat are visible and my family have noticed them too, i keep joking that i am turning into a man with my new adams apple and deepening voice lol but it is a genuine concern, and really not a laughing matter.
enough is enough though now and a few answers wouldn't go a miss, but no one seems to know.
what are reactive lymph nodes?
how are they treated?
what is a lymph node specialist called?

good luck in your quest to find out whats wrong i hope you get better listened to and treament than what i have or have not recieved lol
best wishes and kind regards

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