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Lump in throat, which is termed as globuspharyngeus in medicine, can form due to a number of reasons. The swelling may or may not be accompanied by pain, or any other symptoms including pain when swallowing food or liquid, pain when talking, etc. Sometimes the lump cannot be seen externally in the outside, but rather felt as a sensation in the throat, usually where it causes pain and discomfort. The symptoms will be uncomfortable and annoying for the person experiencing it. The sight of a lump can cause alarm in most people, as it should, because it can be a sign of cancer.
It is not to say that all lumps forming in the throat means cancer; the swelling can be caused a lot of other reasons that can be affecting the throat region. For example, the swelling can be at the lymph nodes in the neck, separate from the throat area. This article looks at the different causes of swelling in the different parts of the throat, such as the part under the chin, or in the side of the neck. It offers some information on how the swelling forms and what can you do to treat it. There is also word on how you should spot the lump as soon as possible and find out what caused it.
Causes of Lump in the Throat
Cancer is certainly the first thing you should be worrying about when you see a lump somewhere. This type of lump usually accompanies with no feeling of pain or discomfort; more the reason it is dangerous as it is difficult to found. Cancer can start in a number of different parts in the areas close to the throat. There can be throat cancer in the larynx, or in the voice box. The cancer can be present in the thyroid gland in the front of throat; it is here that the thyroid hormone is produced. Lump in throat thyroid may mean cancer in that gland, and needs immediate attention. Most cancers develop with time, so if the lump seems to be growing then it can be confirmed as cancer.
The thyroid gland can swell due to a number of other reasons other than cancer. Any physical damage to the gland can cause it to swell, so will any infection caused by pathogens. Seeing a lump in side of throat can be used to confirm that it is the thyroid gland which is affected, as this gland spans for two sides of the neck. The swelling can be a sign of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism involves increased level of activity, anxiety and hyperactivity in the person, while hypothyroidism induces laziness and fatigue. A suitable treatment can be sought if it is either one of these hormone deficiencies.
The lumpy sensation in the throat can be caused by swelling in the tonsils, which could be so much swollen that it touches the tongue below, creating the sensation of something struck in the throat; it will also be causing pain when the sufferer is swallowing. There is another similar group of structures called lingual tonsils at the base of the tongue, which surprisingly goes deep as above the Adams apple. Therefore, enlargement in the lingual tonsils can lead to lump beneath chin which can be felt from outside. Usually infection is the cause for enlargement in the tonsil seen at the mouth or at the lingual tonsils at the base of tongue.
Sometimes the swelling can be on something that runs throughout the body. Lymph node is part of the lymphatic system that is similar to the blood circulatory system; it acts as a drainage system for the body, taking in excess fluid and preventing the buildup of fluids in any part of the body. Lymph nodes are bean like structures that is present in some numbers in the neck, armpit and groin. The lymph node can become swelled due to the usual causes such as infection or cancer. The same problems affecting any parts near the lymph nodes can also cause it to swell.
Treatment for Lump in the Throat
If the cause of the lump is found to be cancer, it should follow treatment immediately. Surgery is a good option if the cancer is in the initial stages; in fact, surgery is the most effective treatment option for cancer. For example, cancer in any of the lingual tonsils can be removed by removing the tonsils altogether by surgery. Cancer in other valuable parts of the body such as the thyroid glands can be harder to remove via surgery. Other treatment methods for cancer include chemotherapy and radiation therapy where the cancerous cells are exposed to ionizing radiation.
In the case of normal swelling in the lingual tonsils, you can follow some treatment methods to reduce the swelling and ease the pain. The best way is by fighting infection with antibiotic taken through the mouth. You may also use antiseptic sprays toward off the infection, or use any mouth wash to clean the mouth and throat. Instead of using the commercial products you can try a gurgle with salt water; it is a quick and easy home remedy for infection. It can be done several times a day to see results. You may also reduce the swelling in the lingual tonsils by keeping ice outside under the chin; it will reach the tonsils within.
It is imperative that you find the cause of the mysterious lump fast. Though there are a lot of other causes, it may mean cancer. Cancer needs to be spotted and attempted to be controlled as fast as possible after it is brought on; this is important as cancer can spread in the affected part and to nearby parts as well. You can let a sigh after you have ruled out cancer as a cause of the swelling. Afterwards you can take care of simple problems such as infection or sore throat. It is advisable to always keep checking for any lump in esophagus that you spot one as soon as it forms.