Together we will beat cancer


25F with a 3-week-old lump in my neck & swollen lymph nodes

19 Mar 2023 16:20

For three weeks, I've had a tennis ball-sized lump in the centre of my neck. There is no pain, and I was unaware of it. Others had pointed it out to me. It was affecting my breathing after the first two weeks, so I went to the doctor. The doctor was more concerned with the size of my lymph nodes, which I had no idea were swollen, so blood tests were scheduled (they all came back clear for cold, covid, flu, infection and thyroid issues). I now need an ultrasound because I have a family history of throat cancer. I wasn't too concerned until today, when all of the lumps felt bigger. When I inhale and exhale, it "flutters" and causes choking. I couldn't find a comparable post online, so I'm creating my own to assist others. 

25F with a 3-week-old lump in my neck & swollen lymph nodes

19 Mar 2023 20:10 in response to TeaPot97

Hi! I'm 25 too and going through something very similar. Ive had a swelling over the front of my neck on the left side for a while now, not as big as you're describing, steadily grown in size to now be maybe a ping pong ball?
But also a small enlarged lymph node in my left posterior triangle of my neck for about 3 months, like a large pea, which is what prompted me to visit my GP. She said the same, that my lymph nodes were enlarged. Bloods were ok save for a slightly raised CRP and IgA and slightly high neutrophils, low iron and folate. I'm seeing haematology on Tuesday and an ultrasound Wednesday. Lymphoma has been mentioned so I'm a bit worried, but still 95% sure it's just going to be reactive lymph nodes! I've had some unintentional weight loss, low grade fevers, cough and some itching hence the haematology referral.
Fingers crossed your ultrasound comes around quickly. X

25F with a 3-week-old lump in my neck & swollen lymph nodes

20 Mar 2023 00:02 in response to Blop97

Hi, thank you so much for responding. I'm really sorry to hear that. The side sounds uncomfortable! I sleep on my side. I'm glad you have both appointments now, they're difficult to come by at the moment, and I hope you get good results. I'm surprised they left it 3 months, I've been told to expect a 4 week wait for the ultrasound. Lymphoma and thyroid cancer have been mentioned for me, I'm not sure if I'm just positive or in denial. I haven't had any other symptoms, just breathing issues. I'm very fortunate to already have strong pain relief for other issues, so perhaps that's why I can't feel it. I hope you're not in pain x

25F with a 3-week-old lump in my neck & swollen lymph nodes

20 Mar 2023 08:37 in response to TeaPot97

Hi again! You know what's funny, I have no pain at all! Absolutely nothing. GP kept asking me if it was tender but it isn't.

It was actually 3 months before I went to get it checked out - I'd had tonsillitis and thought it might be reactive lymph nodes so waited to see if they'd go down - but sadly not. It's all been very quick since I referred - 1st March referred to ENT & ultrasound, apt came through for ultrasound on 22nd March within a few days, then after my bloods came back GP rang me and changed referral from ENT (who have longer waiting lists) to haematology on 10th March - so an 11 day wait which is fab! It all just feels so slow when you're in it.

I've wondered about thyroid cancer too, especially with the cough. I don't know - I wish we had X-ray vision! 

Thank you for replying - it's nice to talk to somebody of a similar age in a similar boat. It can be a lonely time despite the support of family/friends/colleagues. x 


25F with a 3-week-old lump in my neck & swollen lymph nodes

10 May 2023 23:53 in response to Blop97

(Thread Update)

Symptoms after 11 weeks:

- Swollen neck, collarbone area, lymph nodes, one tonsil, and salivary glands.

-  Persistent voice loss (for a week at a time), vocal hoarseness, and difficulty in swallowing.

- Loss of appetite and difficulty keeping food and water down. I couldn't keep water down for 2 weeks. I'm still only managing one meal a day. I've lost 2 dress sizes.

- Night sweats. Despite always usually being freezing, I have been sweating so profusely that I look like I've been caught in a torrential downpour. It feels like I'm in an oven. 

-Difficulty sleeping on a night, and falling asleep standing up (cooking on the hob during the day). 

-Deafness. I woke up deaf and remained deaf for 4 weeks. I'm still suffering from severe hearing loss.

-What looks like blisters at the back of my throat (back wall). I had to use an ear camera to see so far back, which I purchased on Amazon. Wouldn't recommend it for anyone who doesn't have a very steady hand and a good gag reflex.

-Body aches. Particularly my chest and sternum, which I suspect is from the choking, and my calves. Headaches included.

-Nose bleeds and vomiting blood.


I had my ultrasound scan, but the doctors “aren't happy with the results”- whatever that means- so I need another one. 

I woke up completely deaf and remained so for 4 weeks. I purchased an ear camera on Amazon to check my ears and throat and found what looks like blisters at the back of my throat (back wall).

I then visited A&E and asked if I had an ear infection, tonsilitis, or perhaps even laryngitis. He said my ears were unremarkable, I had no temperature, and there are no signs of bacterial, fungal or viral infections.

He ruled out an allergic reaction and referred me to an ENT specialist to further investigate what he called the “masses or growths” down my throat. I'm seeing a specialist on Friday (May 12th, 2023).

I will update again with the next steps, results, and my diagnosis to help people with what “cancer”* can look like, and what can present similarly to “cancer”.**


*Although 3 doctors believe I have cancer, I have not had a conclusive biopsy, and refuse to believe so until it is proven by the ENT specialist.

**If it's not cancer, I will still update this thread.