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Smoker. Having pain in throat, feels like tendon get stuck. Taking medication. What could be the problem?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
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4 months ago I woke up with a striking pain in the throat (left side of XXXXXX apple) it was so bad I couldn't go back to sleep. The pain cleared up, but now I get this weird click in the same area after I yawn. It feels like a bone or tendon get stuck and click right back to place after I move my head around. I've had a barium swallow, thyroid ultra sound and a blood test done, and nothing showed up. The click does not hurt but just annoying, and even worse the fear of cancer as I've been a half a pack a day smoker for 15 years. I went to see a different doctor which was really interested in this symptom, he said that the tendons became loose on the hyoid bone, and thatthis is just a abnormality and i'm currently on antiinflammatories and i might just have to just get used to it. I did not have any neck trauma prior to this but I do recall having a severe sinus infection prior to this. 2 weeks ago I went to see a third doctor and he told me its my hyoid bone causing this and it is quite normal. The click only happens when i yawn, and whatever happens in that process, i can feel with my hands something gets stuck on my thyroid and then shifts back down.
Posted Sun, 14 Oct 2012 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Raju A.T 10 minutes later

Thanks for your query.

Yes , such a presentation is common, though not seen in all. It most of times happens due to the elongation of the ligaments which holds the hyoid bone in place.

This can happen following a milder form of infection which could be from organs or structures in the vicinity.The infection could cause mild chondritis (inflammation in the cartilage ) and soon resolve due to low blood supply and less tissue needed for the bacterial growth.Such an inflammation can rarely cause such a deformation in the ligaments and cause the clicking noise on neck movements.

This condition does not cause any serious complications and can be corrected by a simple surgery.But I consider it not serious enough or XXXXXX to the future to consider surgery for its management.This may reverse on its own over time when left undisturbed.

Hope I answered your query.

Wish you good health.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Smoker. Having pain in throat, feels like tendon get stuck. Taking medication. What could be the problem? 5 hours later
its not infact a clicking noise, i can feel the shift/snap of the ligament down, after a yawn, there is no noise to it, just can see it in the mirror, or feel it internally and when i hold my hand over it.
Answered by Dr. Raju A.T 6 hours later

Thanks for writing back.

I meant the feeling of snap when I mentioned the click.It does typically present as you describe.

As I said above it can be corrected by surgery but I would not consider it compulsory.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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