Swollen Lymph Nodes - Complications

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What are the complications of swollen lymph nodes?

There may be some complications associated with enlarged lymph nodes. If the lymph node swelling is related to an infection that is not treated, then an abscess (a pus-containing cavity) may ensue, which may require incisional drainage and antibiotics. The skin underlying the enlarged lymph node may also become infected.

In other cases, the lymph node may become very large and compress other nearby structures in the body. This could be a serious and debilitating problem that may require immediate medical or surgical attention. For example, the lymph node in the underarm (axilla) can compress the blood vessels and nerves supplying the arm. An enlarged lymph node inside the abdomen may compress the intestines and cause an obstruction of the intestines.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: tonya, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

My right lymph node in my neck is 1 cm in size. I had a CT and they are not ruling out cancer. I don't go back in till September 17 to see the ear, nose, and throat specialist. Now I have swollen taste buds and a sore throat.

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Comment from: meeknote, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: May 03

A few months ago when I touched my lymph nodes I could feel my heart from there. Plus my heart goes faster sometimes. My doctor gave me a monitoring machine so I have to wear this for 2 weeks, then they will take it away to see what is wrong. So I am just wondering why my lymph nodes pulse like this, it kind of worries me because my brother-in-law died from lymph nodes cancer. I have pretty much quit smoking, kind of hard when you have smoked all your life. I am 53.

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