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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Suggest remedy for salivary gland swelling in an elderly person

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Dr. T Chandrakant

General Surgeon

Practicing since :1984

Answered : 16961 Questions

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Posted on Fri, 23 Oct 2015 in Elderly Problems
Question: 92 yr old mother occasionally gets sudden swollen gland in neck under ear(salivary gland?) then sudden onset of diarrhea which last couple of hours then she's weak but better. Basically always happens in the morning when she takes a couple of bites of breakfast. Doesn't matter what the breakfast is. Thank you
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Answered by Dr. T Chandrakant 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Investigations and clinical evaluation.

Detailed Answer:
Hi.
Thanks for your query for your Mother.
Read and understood that she is 92, sudden swollen gland and sudden onset of diarrhea on taking few bites of breakfast in the morning.

It is possible that both the things may not be co-related.
The swelling as you have rightly mentioned is most probably due to the Parotid Salivary gland. The reason of swallowing is blockage in the duct carrying saliva.
This can be due to stricture, stone or so.
I would advise you to have high resolution ultrasonography to see for the probable cause followed by CT scan or MRI to confirm the findings. Occasionally sialography meaning putting a XXXXXXX into the duct and getting X-ray and sialo-endoscopy if the stone is present helps to cure the problem. Considering Her age, we should go for least troublesome investigations.

The reason for sudden onset of diarrhea is usually a reflex one. This reflex can be due to the bites of the breakfast. This does happen in many people, that the bowel movement is induced by such acts, like some get the movements after taking a certain thing in the morning.
If this is so and if she has no trouble later on, nothing specific can be done.
To be on a safer side, please get a clinical evaluation and examination done once by a Doctor and investigations if Doctor thinks to rule out any organic problem in the abdomen like colitis, mass or so.

I hope this answer helps you, please feel free to ask further relevant queries if you feel that there is a gap of communication.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
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