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What causes enlarged lymph nodes in neck?

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Posted on Mon, 21 Apr 2014
Question: I am not sure if you got that first bit so I will start again I have swollen lymph nodes in my neck they have been swollen for almost a year now I have had one removed and It came back to be nothing which I was happy about But I worry why I still have these swollen lymph nodes still The one I had removed has grown back and others are in my neck on both sides one on the left side of the back of my head a a hard pea shaped on on my right collar bone I also have headaches in my face and back of my head all day, occasionally I have strong chest and breast pain that goes up to my left shoulder. Recently i have started to grow thick black hair on my body and my body hair that i had already seems to grow very fast and thicker. I feel light headed often and have to really push myself to be able to work and do daily activities. I had lap sleeve a year ago and have lost 40 kilos. I have had ovarian cysts the size of tennis ball that had burst I have had twins, followed by gall stone, colistitis, mild pancreitits and a stone stuck in my bile duct. I have had my appendix removed and have always had a very tender stomach to touch.
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Answered by Dr. Vidya KR (3 hours later)
Brief Answer: Chronic infection, investigations required Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX Thanks for writing to HCM. I went through your query and understood your concerns. As in your case previous lymph node study was normal , its a good sign. Not to worry. Enlarged lymph nodes indicates infection which is not adequately treated for long time resulting in chronic infection, repeated infection can result in enlarged lymph nodes. If a patient comes to me with these symptoms first I would like do completely physical examination to check for source of infection: throat infection, any tooth caries, nasal sinus, ear examination. So first I would like rule out source of infection first order including Tuberculosis, HIV as well. As your lymph node biopsy is negative for malignancy, I would still like to order an excisional biopsy by removing the lymph node completely and sending for HPE by pathologist. Your above mentioned symptoms are common in infection or other immune abnormalities. I would like get few test done complete blood count, TSH, ultrasound abdomen, ECG and stress test for heart. Depending on these would like to get hormonal assay as you are mentioned about increased hair growth Once cardiac problems are ruled out common cause for chest pain is gastric acid reflux. Acid reduction medications do help in reducing your symptoms. Head ache if its a recent onset need to get eye refractive test and sinus examination done. Chronic headache common cause is migraine in females. Please take my opinion to your primary physician. Wish you a good health Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vinay Bhardwaj
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Answered by
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Dr. Vidya KR

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2011

Answered : 1664 Questions

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What causes enlarged lymph nodes in neck?

Brief Answer: Chronic infection, investigations required Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX Thanks for writing to HCM. I went through your query and understood your concerns. As in your case previous lymph node study was normal , its a good sign. Not to worry. Enlarged lymph nodes indicates infection which is not adequately treated for long time resulting in chronic infection, repeated infection can result in enlarged lymph nodes. If a patient comes to me with these symptoms first I would like do completely physical examination to check for source of infection: throat infection, any tooth caries, nasal sinus, ear examination. So first I would like rule out source of infection first order including Tuberculosis, HIV as well. As your lymph node biopsy is negative for malignancy, I would still like to order an excisional biopsy by removing the lymph node completely and sending for HPE by pathologist. Your above mentioned symptoms are common in infection or other immune abnormalities. I would like get few test done complete blood count, TSH, ultrasound abdomen, ECG and stress test for heart. Depending on these would like to get hormonal assay as you are mentioned about increased hair growth Once cardiac problems are ruled out common cause for chest pain is gastric acid reflux. Acid reduction medications do help in reducing your symptoms. Head ache if its a recent onset need to get eye refractive test and sinus examination done. Chronic headache common cause is migraine in females. Please take my opinion to your primary physician. Wish you a good health Regards