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Child is having prominent jugular pulse. What is the disease called?

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Posted on Thu, 9 May 2013
Question: My 5 year old sons external jugular veins often pulse along the length of his neck. It is not carotid pulse but is definitely the external jugulars. They clearly become prominent and the pulse becomes extremely noticeable on the vessel itself. There are no symptoms of note along with this.
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Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth (52 minutes later)
Hi,
Welcome to HCM!

A prominent jugular pulse is indicative of some pressure changes in the right side of heart.
Sometimes you may see them in abnormal heart rate conditions.
Did he have a clinical examination by a pediatrician so far ?
If your son is otherwise normal and has no respiratory problems like wheezing,etc,then may be it can be ignored.

Good luck
God bless
Dr Uma
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth (20 hours later)
He has seen a pediatric cardiologist about 1 year ago because he had an episode of hypoglycemia where he was complaining of chest pains and had palpitations and tachycardia. His cardiology exam revealed nothing abnormal. He had an electrocardiogram and echo-cardiogram done. The jugular pulse is something new that I noticed for a couple of weeks now. It is not the visual pulsation from the XXXXXXX jugular that you can see when you turn your head 45 degrees near the collarbone. This pulsing is actually the entire vessel. It rises and falls.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth (44 minutes later)
Hi,
Great that the cardiology exam and echo were normal - that rules out the group of congenital cardiac anomalies .
what you describe looks more like transmitted pulsations .
External jugular vein has 2 valves and sometimes the portion between the 2 valves may be dilated. It is not in direct continuity with the superior vena cava XXXXXXX jugular pulsations are more reliable( to indicate some problem in the rat side of heart) because of the direct line of continuity.
However I suggest that you show the child to the pediatrician or cardiologist so that direct examination and evaluation can be done and your doubts clarified.
Good luck
Dr Uma


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth

Pediatrician, Neonatology

Practicing since :1970

Answered : 891 Questions

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Child is having prominent jugular pulse. What is the disease called?

Hi,
Welcome to HCM!

A prominent jugular pulse is indicative of some pressure changes in the right side of heart.
Sometimes you may see them in abnormal heart rate conditions.
Did he have a clinical examination by a pediatrician so far ?
If your son is otherwise normal and has no respiratory problems like wheezing,etc,then may be it can be ignored.

Good luck
God bless
Dr Uma