Any advice? Upcoming scan

Hi, I wondered if anyone has suggestions. I have had several ENT visits over the last 6 years because of chronic salivary gland inflammation with intermittent acute flare ups. Just over a year ago I was told that the ultrasound scan of throat and neck also showed an enlarged thyroid with diffuse nodules but my blood test were normal and it's nothing to be concerned about.

Another appt with ENT this week following 3 month flare up of salivary gland problem, and because a huge range of blood tests last year for autoimmune conditions came up with nothing , they want to remove one to examine to try to get a diagnosis. This Dr said that part of the symptoms of throat swelling and feeling that I need to cough but cough doesn't dislodge anything could be due to the enlarged thyroid rather than the salivary glands. I'm now waiting for another ultrasound prior to appt with the surgeon, but no more blood tests have been mentioned. I've had a look online to see what I should try to find out but it seems quite complicated! Any insight would be gratefully received!

8 Replies

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  • Hi,

    Pleased to hear your Consultant is being pro active.

    I have problems with on/off neck (under jaw and chin) lymph nodes and very sore painful inflammation and ulcers in the fleshy area under tongue and deep under the gums.

    Thought I would message as I have an atrophied thyroid (not from surgery, literally right side only thyroid gland). Thyroid intermittently swells and redens, particularly when I feel at my worst.

    My half thyroid was discovered due to the discomfort however I have other considerable health problems, in particular affecting mobility weakness and pain. That's a ling story... basically left to get on with it with CFS/ME & Fibromyalgia diagnosis .

    My own view is my stuff is more likely due to the atrophied thyroid/pituitary adenoma & other stuff, and autoimmune and symptoms are more typical.

    I would encourage your Dr's to find out exactly why your thyroid swells. Normal blood tests are not the full story as sometimes it can be about hormone conversion it seems.

    Also Consultants have told me that ultrasound scans can be very vague, largely as good as the Radiologist and whats happening with you on the day. I'd had four us's in the same area, in a year, before my half thyroid was picked up!

    It may be worth you requesting a nuclear PET Thyroid scan.

    Biopsy of lymph node is good.

    Do write an update. Try not to stress about the procedure as will stress your glands.

    Wishing you well.

    Xx

  • Thankyou for your reply, your condition sounds very painful, the ultrasound last year was done by a doctor and was very thorough, hope that's the same this time. This is the first time the thyroid has been considered an issue. I'm 51, about 2 stone overweight but generally fairly fit and well , I'm a keen walker but have found myself short of breath recently going uphill. So maybe that's where the thyroid is pressing on upper airway. Really feel the cold and get tired but no other classic thyroid symptoms. I can see from people's posts that it seems a struggle to get doctors to see beyond the most basic of blood results and "normal" range doesn't necessarily mean there's no problem. I'll post again after the ultrasound when I might have a bit more detailed info. Thanks again!

  • Hi sorry I can't help with your salivary gland problem but can you get your thyroid test results (with ranges in brackets) and post them as what doctors consider normal and what is optimal for your health are two different matters!

    Do you have any other symptoms of hypothyroidism?

    Wishing you the best of luck!

  • Hi, the last results were last April 2015, I did ask for a print out from the hospital but it never arrived. I think they may do some more after the ultrasound so I'll ask if I can have those then I'll post them. Don't think I have other symptoms apart from the tiredness and always cold. Many thanks for your reply!

  • Yes tiredness and coldness are typical symptoms of hypothyroidism as is low body temperature, stomach problems, brain fog, ridged nails, feeling detached, skin tags plus plus plus!!!

  • Hi I do have some stomach problems, hadn't occurred to me they could be thyroid related, heartburn, and bloating/ wind (oh dear) after eating certain veg and beans (the high fodmap ones so I'd assumed this was a mild version of ibs )

    Don't have any problems with mood or cognition.

    By ridged nails do you mean bottom to top of nail or across? Mine are ridged bottom to top but I thought this was just age related (age51). Thanks for your reply

  • I would try to get a Fine Needle Analysis (FNA) on the largest of your thyroid nodules just to make sure they are not cancerous. But do post your blood test results (with ranges) together with other symptoms, otherwise it is difficult to give an opinion.

    I suggest an FNA because I was found to have nodules on my thyroid, I had the ultrasound and then an FNA - and unfortunately I had Papiloma (sp) cancer and had a total thyroidectomy. I am not suggesting this has happened to you, especially if your TSH is in range (yes, TSH is useful sometimes), but it would be good to know. You probably know this already but if your TSH is very high then your thyroid is giving up and if it is about zero then it is overactive. Both cases are very unpleasant.

  • I'm still waiting for scan date but will ask about this if it's a doctor that scans rather than a radiologist. I'm hoping no chance of cancer as its well over a year and no lumps or anything and no drastic deterioration in health.

    I asked GP for print out of results but the hospital didn't send them to GP, just the same letter they sent to me which just said everything within normal range. They were well over a year ago anyway so not very useful. Depending on outcome of scan if the hospital don't do more blood tests I'll probably get private set done then I can post those!

    Never occurred to me to think about thyroid function, it was all about physical discomfort in my neck which I blamed on my salivary glands inflammation. I'm on a steep learning curve! Thanks for taking the time to reply.

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