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Lump on neck, tender, getting larger in size. Family history of cancer. Suggestions?

I have a lump on the right side of my neck. It is hard and sometimes tender to the touch. I have first noticed this about 3 months ago and I think it may have gotten slightly larger over this time. I am a 31 year old woman and, yes, I do smoke about a pack a day. I am just wondering if this is something that I should have checked out by my regular physician? I do not feel this lump on the other side of my neck. I have a family history of cancer (my father had prostate cancer and I had an aunt that had breast cancer).
Asked On : Fri, 22 Mar 2013
Answers:  1 Views:  35
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General Surgeon 's  Response

Thank you for the query.

Most likely this lump is an lymph node which has gotten enlarged due to some infection. Infection associated lymph node is usually movable, with smooth surface and can be painful. Cancer caused enlargement of a lymph node usually gives painless, hard and not movable lump.

As you do smoke, larynx or throat cancer risk is increased. The best way to check what exactly you are dealing with, is to perform soft tissues ultrasound of this area and have biopsy of this lymph node.

Hope this will help.
Answered: Sat, 23 Mar 2013
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