What is swollen lymph nodes?


Know the basics

What is swollen lymph nodes?

Lymph nodes are small and round tissue masses scatter throughout your body. They are part of your immune system — more specifically the lymphatic system — needed for fighting infection and disease. Swollen lymph nodes signify infection.

How common is swollen lymph nodes?

This health condition is quite common. It can affect patients at any age. However females are more susceptible to this health condition.

Lymph nodes are scattered around the body. They can be found underneath the skin in many areas including:

  • in the armpits
  • under the jaw
  • either side of the neck
  • either side of the groin
  • above the collar-bone

 It can be managed by reducing your risk factors. Please discuss with your doctor for further information.

Know the symptoms

What are the symptoms of swollen lymph nodes?

The common symptoms of swollen lymph nodes are:

  • Tenderness or pain from pressing on lymph nodes
  • oversized swollen lymph nodes
  • Coughing
  • Fatigue
  • Runny nose
  • Chills and sweating
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Red, warm, swollen skin

There may be some symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptom, please consult your doctor.

When should I see my doctor?

You should contact your doctor if you have any of the following:

  • Long lasing and expanding swollen nodes
  • Stern and rubbery infected swollen nodes
  • Persistent fever, night sweats or weight loss
  • Sore throat or having difficulty swallowing or breathing

If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.

Know the causes

What causes swollen lymph nodes?

  • Ear infection
  • Viral infection
  • Bacterial infection
  • HIV/AIDS infection
  • Infected tooth
  • Mononucleosis (mono)
  • Skin infection
  • Strep throat
  • Immune system disorders
  • Cancer
  • Inflammatory diseases

Know the risk factors

What increases my risk for swollen lymph nodes?

There are many risk factors for swollen lymph nodes, such as:

  • Being over age 65
  • Alcoholism
  • Diabetes

Understand the diagnosis & treatment

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.

How is swollen lymph nodes diagnosed?

In order to determine the cause of your swollen lymph nodes, your doctor may need:

  • Review your medical history
  • Conduct a physical exam
  • Conduct blood tests
  • Take Chest X-ray or CT scan
  • Conduct a lymph node biopsy

How is swollen lymph nodes treated?

  • Antibiotics or antiviral medications: these are the most common treatments for the nodes caused by bacterial infection.
  • Treating underlying causes: Sometimes, nodes are the results of negative health condition, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. Treating those negative conditions will effectively cure your nodes.
  • Cancer treatment: this treatment is applied for nodes caused by sancer. The types of cancer will dictate treatments which can involve surgery, radiation or chemotherapy.

Lifestyle changes & home remedies

What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage swollen lymph nodes?

The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with health condition:

  • Taking over-the-counter pain relievers such as Tylenol or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like Advil, Motrin, or Aleve.
  • Avoiding giving aspirin to a child because of the risk for Reye’s syndrome
  • Applying a warm, wet washcloth to the area.
  • Getting plenty of rests.

If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

msBahasa Malaysia


Review Date: May 30, 2016 | Last Modified: December 14, 2018

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