Thyroid UK
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Choking sensations

Hi just wanted to say that I have suffered from an underactive thyroid for about 8 years now and been on 150mg of thyroxine ever since and on occasions has been increased to 175mg I have a number of symptoms one of which includes feeling like my throat is restricted and I have trouble swallowing is this a symptom of my thyroid its driving me crackers can anyone assist with an answer and if possible a solution please.

10 Replies

If you still have symptoms it means your either undermedicted or you need either t3 or a natural dessicated thyroid med

many people do not get really well on thyroxine alone


It could be your thyroid gland, is it bigger, swollen etc. I had a terrible choking sensation during eating and every time I lay on my back at night because I had hashimoto's and my thyroid was just getting bigger and bigger, eventually I had to have it removed. X


Hi I am new to this site, I have just been reading some of the comments rather than commenting myself but I just read your post and it was like you have been talking about me. I have been diagnosed underactive thyoid for 6 years and been on 150mcg of thyroxine, I have been put on a higher dose before but I just shake from head to toe. I do not feel any better, in fact I feel much worse than I did 6 years ago. I have seen an endocronoligist but she was hell bent on telling me i'm depressed (I am now), for the past 4 months I have had the same as you, feeling like my throat is constricted, I have trouble swallowing tablets, even the thyoxine which are very small, I can feel them physically get stuck in my throat. I went to see my GP on monday for a regular appointment and completely forgot to mention it (another one of the lovely problems associated with under active thyroid), I am not due to see her again until early January, however, I may need to see her earlier, if I find anything out I will let you know, also, I would appreciate the same back if you see your GP. I seem to be able to choke on fresh air!!!


I would suggest you go to your doctor and ask for it to be checked, you can get a swollen thyroid with both under and overactive, it can also vary especially with Hashimotos. If it IS swollen, and causing difficulty swallowing, you need to be referred to an endo and they can do a scan to see whether it is a diffuse (widespread) swelling or if it is one or more nodules. It is better to have it checked earlier than later. You may have to be insistent but if this is really causing you difficulty it should be looked at.

It is true that it can reduce if your medication is optimal, but to be honest, you are on a reasonable dose of levo, but without having actual figures especially for the T3, it would be hard to know if it is right for you.

You don't say if you have Hashimoto's, what your test results are, or your other symptoms. Hashis is a disease which can come and go as the antibodies rise and fall.

May I suggest that you post on here the results of your last blood test - with ranges if possible - because it will help you to get better advice and support.

I have Graves' which made me very overactive as a teenager and into my 30s and my thyroid was huge, first it was a large diffuse goitre, and I had a partial thyroidectomy. I was Ok for a time but then I got nodules which were just as uncomfortable so I had the rest removed. I really do sympathise, I used to feel as if I was choking all the time, and couldn't wear anything anywhere near my neck, I would have open necked tops even in the middle of winter! No scarves, nothing!

Please do go and tell your GP - meanwhile, if you have those results, put them on here.

Take care

Marie XX

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thanks for info everyone I honestly don't know my test results cause my doc never tells me the results and I don't like to ask, but I will do next time I see her.


Does anybody know what they'd do if the thyroid gland is swollen.

I don't know if it's the same thing. It occurs very occasionally but is very dramatic when it does. Food gets stuck in my throat. I end up running to the toilet or even back and forth. The only thing is if I'm sick that clears it. But it's an age tightness in the throat and when it occurs I cannot drink never mind get food down.

In general in eat very slowly and would be the last to finish.

I ought to get some Rennie just in case it occurs over Xmas. I was with some family members last time and somebody gave me some Rennie which did the trick to clear this blockage.

If it was stopping me eating on a regular basis I'd be worried, only last time in was money down the drain somewhere on a lunch I didn't eat.

I had mentioned it to a go but he somehow thought it was in my head. But how could I have been anxious to eat with a group of people I know well, or wasn't worried out going beforehand. It has occurred at home too.


I used to wake up in the night choking regularly. Right from the start of being hypo I have had an enlarged tongue. My Endo arranged for me to have an ultra sound scan on my neck, and just said that it was as expected, my thyroid was enlarged with nodules.

I have to be very careful when eating, I can easily choke if food doesn't go down easily. I have a bottle of water with me at all times as I feel panicky at the thought of choking.

How it feels is it is like a kink in a garden hose, when I turn my head I think it cuts off. Horrible!

I would seek medical advice.

As far as my enlarged tongue is concerned, I will just have to put up with it because there is nothing that can be done - hate it!



Hi You really need an ultra sound of the thyroid. If nothing there, then if you also have a problem swallowing, a specialist ENT, who will do a scope in outpatients. It is very simple , no preps. etc.



Hi, like yourself I get problems swallowing and I have to co-ordinate my breathing when eating, so I finish my exhalation when I want to swallow and then do my next inhalation when it's gone down. It sounds so silly I know but it's the only way I know of that guarantees my food has gone down properly.

I also have an enlarged tongue as well and I'm on 125mcg Levothyroxine. The enlarged tongue has only just started to develop however.

Do you get a sensation where the food has gone down the right way but takes a long time to do so? I've read on some educational sites that this could be down to myxoedema accumulating in the oesophagus, thus producing muscle problems.

I would ask your GP to get you booked in for an ultrasound of the thyroid as Jackie above states. I had an ultrasound of my thyroid done and although the gland looked to be bulky on one side they mislaid this report, my previous practice did no more about it and no action was given. A year later I was found to have high thyroid antibodies but I might well push for another ultrasound to be done - who knows, the endo I'll be seeing may recommend it. An ultrasound is worth going for.

Good luck

Jo xxx


oh wow not good this thyroid problem ive gotta be honest I never knew how bad it can be because I was never told anything about it when I was first diagnosed 8 years ago so I have no idea what t3 or t4 are I will do some research on it, if theres a plus side of this at least im losing weight because I can only eat small amounts before I start choking on it then I throw it away because it scares me taking fluids is not a problem its just solids I have trouble with but I will be phoning my docs to get an appointment and I will get it sorted hopefully don't fancy the idea of a thyroid removal. thanks guys x


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