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Hard sore lump behind ear with full feeling in ear. Had ear infection. Should I consult doctor?

Jul 2016
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Practicing since : 1971
Answered : 8295 Questions
Hi. I have a small, hard, fixed lump behind my jaw and right under my skull, a little behind my ear. I can feel it pulsing all the time. It's been there for at least ten years I believe. A lot of times I get a full feeling in that ear. It doesn't seem to pulse when I inhale, it seems to wait till I stop breathing in our out. A little after I noticed it I went to the ER with trouble breathing and they found a large, black lump of wax in my ear, the doctor said my ear produces wax at an accelerated rate.

Sometimes when my glands are enlarged I noticed I get a similar shaped lump getting bigger on my right side as well. It feels a bit sore when my other glands are enlarged. I've had ear infections in the past associated with the wax I think. I'm currently unemployed and have no insurance. Do I need to get to a doctor?
Posted Sat, 2 Feb 2013 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. P. T. Patil 4 hours later
Thanks for writing to us.
The lump that you're talking about is in all likelihood an enlarged lymph node. It could be enlarged due to a chronic infection in the ear. Since its been there for a long term, I dont think it is a serious issue.
It is pulsatile because it is situated over the major vessels in the neck and you can feel the transmitted pulsations of these vessels
It would be a good idea to see your physician, although you can wait till you have insurance. You may need to undergo a minor surgery of Excision Biopsy to confirm the diagnosis..
Let me know if you have any more questions.
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