Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Help for Chronic Swollen Glands

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 5 Replies
  • Posted By: Boltmom
  • December 12, 2006
  • 02:34 AM

Hopefully someone out there can help me. I have had swollen glands for over 20 years with no diagnosis. I've had all kinds of tests. The only other thing found was when the swollen glands started I was diagnosed as hypothyroid. I think the two are connected, but nothing shows up on tests. I feel like I'm walking around with the flu everyday! Does anyone have any information that may help. The swollen glands are in the neck under the ears and under the arms on both sides - but worse on the left side.

Thanks!

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5 Replies:

  • Hi Boltmom,A couple of things you might want to consider is do you have any chronic infections or allergies? Check your home for possible mold..some of the molds can be very toxic and infect your immune system..your lymph glands. I would also check where you work also. To have that long with lymph glands that are swollen it has to be something that has been with you that long, either allergies, chronic infection (do you have diabetes?), something that you are breathing in..mold, insecticide, pesticide, grain dust, or anything that is air-born. GOOD LUCK! TAKE CARE..SKEETER.
    skeeter 42 Replies
    • December 12, 2006
    • 02:52 AM
    • 0
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  • There are several things to consider... Lymph nodes are not actually glands as they do not generate enzymatic fluids or secrete such materials. It is not likely that Hypothyroidism would be the cause of such symptoms as you are describing. I would recommend being retested by an Endocrinologist to find out the status of your thyroid function. There can be much difficulty in getting a proper diagnosis in some cases and you can study up on this by internet research. Mary Shomon's website + book list can be helpful for patients to understand the complexities of diagnostic testing & treatment options but check out other sources too by searching google, etc. http://thyroid.about.com/cs/bookspublications/a/bestbooks.htmI am wondering if the areas of swelling in the neck are actually your salivary glands? There is one located on each side of the neck, called the PAROTID, directly below the ear lobe. You sometimes can feel one or both spasm when eating something sour like lemon or dill pickle. Normally these glands are not really noticeable in the neck by observation or palpation (feeling gently with fingertips for lumps, hardness or swellings). They make saliva and inject into mouth through a duct system which has opening inside your cheek, near back teeth - one on each side. A dentist or the dental hygienist is supposed to assess that duct for signs of infection, tumors, etc when doing regular check ups. There are also lymph nodes that run down each side of the neck, from ear to shoulder area then extending into armpit regions. Lymph nodes normally feel about the size of something like a "m&m" or asprin tablet when feeling (palpating) for them through the skin. Regarding the salivary glands in the neck, they can become infected and by bacteria & viruses (like mumps) but such conditions are normally easily to diagnose. One chronic disease of the Parotid glands is called "Recurrent Parotitis" but it usually causes so much swelling & pain that most doctors would be able to easily recognize the syndrome once other causes have been ruled out. If this has been going on for 20 years, it is chronic and needs to be assessed. Have you ever seen a specialist type doctor for this condition such as specialist in infectious disease or a diagnostician? You might have some sort of sub-clinical inflammation in those glands and an ENT might be best place to start. However, the areas of swelling in your armpits are most likely lymph nodes as no other structures in that region to swell and that really does complicate the bigger picture as to what might really be going on in this situation. They could swell on chronic basis if there is a sub-clinical infection draining purulent material into the lymph system. Also the reply by skeeter had some very helpful suggestions I also agree with comments regarding allergies, mold exposure, and your lifestyle. Your problem may involve some type of autoimmune condition so you may need to have a full work-up by a very experienced doctor who can also refer you to the other specialists in your region. If you are open to alternative medicine, it could also be helpful to consult a very experienced & highly recommended holistic practitioner. If there is not such a person in your region, then you might have to travel some distance. Some MDs and also DOs are now entering into the field of holistic medicine too and the results can be quite amazing for the patients that are lucky to find such excellent doctors!Best Wishes ...
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • December 12, 2006
    • 05:17 PM
    • 0
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  • Thanks so much for all the useful information! I'll take a good read through it. I have been to a naturopath before, but it wasn't helpful. It sounds like hunting around for that great doctor may be the answer.
    Boltmom 1 Replies
    • December 12, 2006
    • 05:51 PM
    • 0
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  • I use to get step throat alot until I stopped eating sugar, had a balanced diet and started exercising. Alot of things stop bothering me when I did this.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • December 12, 2006
    • 05:56 PM
    • 0
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  • Swollen lymph nodes, flu-like symptoms, and non-specific hypothyroidism could all be caused by a food intolerence as well. I would definately recommend seeing an allergenist to do some blood screening for possible common environmental sources of allergy and/or intolerence.
    Azaral 152 Replies
    • December 12, 2006
    • 06:00 PM
    • 0
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