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Lump near the submental lymph node, another nodule inches back from where neck begins. What is wrong?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1998
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I have a bump/lump, maybe 1cm. It feels fixed in it's location, and it is firm. It is in the exact location where the submental lymph node would be. Approx 2 cm from my chin bone, and centered between my left and right jaw bones. I felt this as far back as 8 months ago. It doesn't seem to have grown in size. What concerns me is the lack of pain associated with it, unless I press on it. And the fact that it is not moveable. But additionally, there is what feels like the exact same nodule located 1.5 inches further back where essentially the floor of my mouth ends and my vertical neck begins that has also been there for a long time, again this one doesn't move either. Just a firm nodule 1cm or less. I'm a 23yo white male and I've been chewing tobacco intermittently for 5 years. There are no visible cancerous lesions in my mouth, but I do have a canker sore on my throat. I am a bit worried these nodules now after discovering the importance of them to display pain and mobility to be benign.
Posted Sun, 22 Apr 2012 in Lymphoma
Answered by Dr. Jasvinder Singh 1 hour later

Thanks for posting your query.

Swollen lymph node is often caused by infections, allergic reactions, cancer, metabolic diseases, and an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism).

Based on your description, there are a few possibilities for these symptoms which need to be ruled out. They include:

1) It can be a swollen lymph node like a submental/submandibular lymph node which has swollen in response to nasal and sinus infections.

2) Second possibility is of salivary gland swelling like sublingual gland infection or blockage which lies beneath the mucous membrane of the floor of the mouth. The sublingual and submaxillary (also called the submandibular) glands empty into the mouth through ducts under the tongue. Swelling of these glands due to blockage of these ducts leads to interference of production and drainage of saliva and pain and irritation. It may be due to some obstruction like stone or tumor, inflammation and infection.

3) Third possibility is of any cyst or benign skin growth.

You would need to get this lump examined by a doctor. After careful examination and some tests like MRI scan (for any soft tissue growth) and a FNAB (fine needle aspiration biopsy), your doctor would be able to determine the exact nature of the swelling. FNAB is aspiration of the material of the lump which is done by a fine gauge needle (22 or 25 gauge) and a syringe. In addition your doctor may also ask for certain investigations like blood count, sialography, sialendoscopy and CT scan of the area to confirm the diagnosis.

Do not worry. Most likely this lump is due to a swollen lymph node or a benign growth like a lipoma.

Till the time you get this lump examined from a doctor, apply warm compresses on the lump because if it is a swollen lymph node then application of warm compresses will help.

You can also send me the pictures at YYYY@YYYY with sub: “ATTN Dr Jasvinder singh” or attach them with this query so that I can have a look at the photographs and it will help me in understanding the condition better.

Hope this answers your query. If you have additional questions or follow up queries then please do not hesitate in writing to us. I will be happy to answer your queries.

Please accept my answer in case you have no follow up query.

Wish you good health.


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