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Pain in trachea while breathing. Windpipe area is swollen. Anything serious?

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My wife has slight pain in the trachea while deep breathing. The pain increases while she lays down. The pain is not constant but intermittent. Her windpipe area seems to be swollen below the neck near the chest. But I cant be sure if its swollen or not. This happens mostly at night but not every night. Its not that serious that we go see a doctor but has happened quite often now and that's why I seek professional advice. I thought your service provided instant help. I've been waiting for an doctor to respond for an hour now?
Posted Fri, 15 Nov 2013 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
 
 
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Rule out acid reflux and thyroid problems.

Detailed Answer:
Hi,

Thank you for your query.

1. Though there are may possible causes for her symptoms, the most common conditions to be ruled out are chronic acid reflux and thyroid problems.

2. Doe she have any cough or change in voice or swallowing along with her tracheal symptoms? Does she have a history of a recent Upper Respiratory Tract Infection (Tracheitis following a URTI)? Does she snore?

3. Request a doctor to do a routine check-up and prescribe a trial of anti-reflux medication.

4. if the medication, does not help, get a videolaryngoscopy done. Blood tests including a Hemogram (to rule out anemia and Plummer Vinson Syndrome), Thyroid function tests, Lipid profile may be done. Neck, Chest and Sinus X-rays, Cardiac evaluation (ECG and 2D Echo) may be necessary to check for causes for a Tracheal tug.

I hope that I have answered your query. If you have any further questions, I will be available to answer them.

Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Pain in trachea while breathing. Windpipe area is swollen. Anything serious? 6 minutes later
Thank you for your response, Doctor. I will certainly get all the tests you've mentioned above.

Since you asked, no she does not have cough or change in voice and no history of URTI. She complains about this slight pain while going to sleep atleast twice a month and has been complaining for a year now. The pain is not sharp, sometimes she mentions "heaviness on the chest". She does not snore or even smoke.

I just hope there is nothing serious to worry about.

Regards,
XXXX XXXX
 
 
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 24 hours later
Brief Answer:
There is no cause for worry.

Detailed Answer:
Hi,

Thank you for writing back.

1. Further treatment options may be discussed with the test results.

2. There seem to be no signs involving the trachea. Since these symptoms occur only about twice a month, there is no cause for worry.

3. The heaviness in the chest is suggestive of reflux issues. If this does not settle down with medication, the chest and cardiac tests may be done.

I hope that I have answered your query. If you have any further questions, I will be available to answer them.

Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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