British Lung Foundation
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what's the thing that dangles down in your throat called

what's the thing that dangles down in your throat called

Anyway hope thats only thing that will shrink on me.

Am not 100% but am sure mine as shrunk as a don't ever rember it being that small.

Its a shame what ever is going on could not shrink my lung problems to a more manageable size.

But on serious point am sure thats not bad given sleep problems you can have with a swallon Uvula anyway thats name of thing that dangles down in your mouth.

I hope its nothing really but was reading about sleep apnea and your brain controling your breathing musicals.

Am not saying i have sleep apnea but am saying given i have been quite bad of late with my breathing.

Would it be reasonable to assume my body is trying to compansate for my poor lung function and shrinking my Uvula.

And is there anyone else noticed there bit shrinking esp those suffering ipf ild or asbestosis

15 Replies

Hi Daz - Im sure this is not your imagination. I have copd, not the conditions you mention, but a few years ago my respiratory nurse noticed my uvula was "a funny shape". When i looked myself, it was smaller and kinda pointy. In my case it may be linked to severe reflux and the remodelling which has taken place in my oesophagus and windpipe.

Thanks so much for posting this - I've not given it much thought before. Putting all the bits into a whole picture is so difficult isn't it? It would be nice to think this might be a helpful bodily compensation!

Hope no other dangley bits shrink though ;)

You take care Daz :)


Hi O2trees ye cheers .. Dont think its is compansatable.

Apartly you can lift it up with a spoon and see ya sinusis .. but i would not recommend it as could have spoon and lung problems.

Think it is indecation of how bad lung diease is affecting you be intresting to hear from others .. :)

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Hi daz, I don't know a lot about it, we call it a clacker in our family, no idea why.

polly xx

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Us english or or langue dont have problems talking with a defective clacker .. but other country's do and cant communicate .. think you right about it being called a clacker :)

Cheers :)


I suffer reflux as do many lung problemeers. (my new word) and if you look at it logically if it is being attacked with stomach acid etc. it will react to it in some way? It was made for all the normal things we throw down it not the bodies digestive acids.

Found this:

What are the symptoms of acid reflux?

Asthma - gastric juices seep upwards into the throat, mouth and air passages of the lungs

Chest pain - part of the heartburn sensation

Dental erosion

Dysphagia - difficulty swallowing

Heartburn - a burning feeling rising from the stomach or lower chest towards the neck


Regurgitation - bringing food back up into the mouth

What causes acid reflux?

Acid reflux commonly occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) does not work properly, and allows acid to seep upwards from the stomach to the esophagus. Although we know that a faulty LES is a common cause, we are not sure why it becomes faulty. One of many reasons could be that pressure in the stomach rises higher than the LES can withstand.

Here are some common causes of acid reflux:

Pregnancy - more commonly found during the third trimester of a pregnancy. As the growing baby presses on the stomach, contents may back up into the esophagus. Doctors say antacids will not relieve acid reflux caused by pregnancy. Patients find that if they eat smaller meals but eat more meals per day, it helps. In the vast majority of cases the acid reflux will disappear soon after the baby is born.

Large meals and eating habits - people who have large meals will usually find that their acid reflux will improve if they cut down portion sizes. Patients who kept a food diary, noting down everything they ate and linking certain foods to incidences of acid reflux, have experienced a reduction in acid reflux.

Bending forward - this movement will not usually cause acid reflux unless there is another underlying trigger or problem.

Hiatus hernia (hiatal hernia) - a condition where the upper part of the stomach protrudes into the chest through a small opening in the diaphragm. Hiatal hernias are commonly caused by severe coughing, vomiting, straining, sudden physical exertion, pregnancy, and obesity.

Peptic ulcers and insufficient digestive enzymes - peptic ulcers and not enough digestive enzymes in the stomach may slow down the digestive process, causing an accumulation of gastric acids that back up into the esophagus.

Asthma - experts still argue about which came first, the asthma or the acid reflux - did the asthma cause the acid reflux or did the acid reflux cause the asthma? Nobody has a definite answer to the relationship between asthma and acid reflux. Some say that the coughing and sneezing brought on by asthmatic attacks can cause changes in the chest which trigger acid reflux. Others blame asthma medications - they are taken to dilate the airways, but might also relax the esophageal sphincter.

Most asthma sufferers say that their asthma is worsened by acid reflux because the acid that seeps into the esophagus from the stomach stimulates the nerves along the neck into the chest, causing bronchial constriction and breathing problems.

Smoking - research has shown that the saliva of smokers contain lower levels of bicarbonates, which neutralize acids. Cigarette smoking also reduces the production of saliva. Smoking also stimulates the production of stomach acid, weakens the esophageal sphincter, promotes the movement of bile salts from the intestine to the stomach (making the acids more harmful), and slows down digestion (making stomach pressure last longer because it takes more time to empty).

Alcohol - patients have commented that quitting alcohol, or cutting down consumption significantly improved their symptoms.

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Im sure you're right, Offcut, that reflux could affect the uvula. I forgot to mention in my reply to daz above that i have severe reflux, hiatus hernia and barrette oesophagus, which might be more relevant than the copd.

The stomach acid can also get aspirated into the lungs, causing yet more damage. Plus the meds for chest infections etc - ABs and pred - both cause reflux to worsen as a side effect. All goes round in circles.

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Hi, my uvala was to long and touching my voice box and rattling, so they said so I went in for one day and they burnt it off. Same as you I said to them make sure I'm facing the right way up on the operating table, didn't, want anything else burnt off. But a couple of weeks later they found out I had COPD and emphysema, and this was the trouble all the time.


Hi Daz, Pete snores quite a lot and has lots of throat problems so it could be his uvula. I have never really thought about it until now and must go and look in his mouth to see how it looks. Pete is to be fitted with a cpap next month so hope that helps him a bit. Glad you are feeling a little better. Take care. xxxx


Anyway hope that's only thing that will shrink on me.

Hi Daz on a lighter note when you get to my age 75 you will find other bits that dangle may shrink just like your clacker but don't worry about it just yet hehehe.


All my dangling bits are still in place at nearly 65! Hope it stays that way. I find it useful to learn the sound in Portuguese which sometimes come from the throat (a bit like the R in French, and not at all like the J in Spanish!)

i.e. rua, pronounced, like in French rue, at the back of the throat, meaning street! Ah well!...


i didn't know a J was in Spanish S p a n i s h no J hehe. my teacher said the P was silent as in bathing


silent as in bathing??? true psicologia = sicolojia

I'm afraid, I did start learning Spanish, but had not found anyone to practice with the j (!), I stopped.

then I listened to some Portuguese fado (namely Amalia Rodrigues). I was so moved that I wanted to know what the words meant. So I started learning Portuguese, which has a very different pronunciation to the Spanish. I follow the Assimil method, which consists of dialogues only. The CDs are marvellous!


sorry about the poor joke, it was not mine but a teacher from way back, the P [PEE] is silent in bathing.

for me having damaged lungs from birth in wartime i missed a lot of my schooling and think my brain must have been short of oxygen, still trying to learn English. racey.


Hi Daz,

I'm finding that as I get older, quite a few of my bits are shrinking.

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Daz, I've lost about an inch in height!


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