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Noticed swollen gland in neck below ear lobe. Feels tender to touch. Feels like burning. Cure?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
Answered : 6184 Questions
Hello - last night my left ear felt blocked. This morning, and all day thus far, I have what I believe is a swollen gland in my neck. It's right below my left ear lobe, right next to the top of my jaw. It's very tender to touch. My left ear feels like it's burning. It hurts to tilt my head back and down. It also hurts when I open my mouth. When I swallow, I don't have a sore throat, but my left ear hurts.Other than that I feel fine.
The only new things I've done in the past week or so:
Got a tetanus shot
Stopped taking klonopin
Wore junk earrings - I usually wear 14K
I'm not sure if this is something to be concerned with or not. My doctor is on vacation until the middle of July.
Posted Mon, 8 Jul 2013 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Chobufo Ditah 2 hours later
Hi and thank you so much for this query. I am Dr. Ditah and feel honored providing answers to your query today. I am so sorry about what you are experiencing right now. I do promise to walk through this with you and provide useful information.

From your symptoms, the suspicion for acute otitis media is very high. This is an infection of the middle ear. It is mostly caused by viruses and to a lesser extend bacterias. It typically presents with ear pain, fever, and maybe reduced hearing and ear discharge. Local painful lymph nodes like the one you noted in your case can be associated.

Viral infections often get controlled with pain killers, warm compresses around the ear and at times, ear drops. Bacteria infections always require associating an antibiotic for appropriate treatment.

All the things you have done: anti tetanus shot and stopping klonopin are in no way related or possible causes of this condition.

Ear pain in an adult warrants immediate consultation. You may want to book and see a different doctor to get an exam, pneumatic otoscopy. This consist of looking into the ear with a light source through a magnifier to see if the tympanic membrane is for real affected. Depending on the findings, treatment would be tailored accordingly.

I wish you all the best as you go about this.
Wish you good health.
Dr. Ditah, MD.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Noticed swollen gland in neck below ear lobe. Feels tender to touch. Feels like burning. Cure? 50 minutes later
Hi Dr. Ditah! Thank you for your reply. I called my ent and she didn't see me but prescribed augmentin 2x a day for 14 days. Hopefully this will help. We are going on vacation July 2-9. Will it be okay to have a few drinks while taking this medication during that time?? Also, upon feeling the are with the pain I think it is a node or gland. It feels like an oval shaped bean which is sore to touch. Thanks again.
Answered by Dr. Chobufo Ditah 48 minutes later
Hi and thanks for this follow up information.
Augmentin is a good drug for the treatment of otitis media.

Generally, we discourage alcohol consumption while on medications. However, a glass for sociable moments while on Augmentin will not be too bad.

The nodule is a swollen lymph node as a result of the ear infection. They increase in size as they actively fight to keep the infection controlled.

I wish you good health and a safe and enjoyable vacations.
I wish you a speedy recovery from this ear infection.
If you have no questions related to the above query, you may consider closing the discussion now. Please do take some minutes to rate the answer and write a review.
Dr. Ditah, MD.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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