My Globus Pharyngeus Felt Like a Lump in My Throat
It Felt Like There Was a Lump in My Throat
With a few simple lifestyle changes, I finally got rid of the sensation of a lump in my throat. This is good news for me and for other sufferers of globus pharyngeus. My otolaryngologist is the one who diagnosed my condition as cricopharyngeus spasm (aka globus pharyngeus). Okay, that is far too many big words for one sentence. So, let's start from the beginning...
I had been experiencing an annoying sensation that felt like a lump in my throat for a while. Today I saw a head and neck specialist and found out it's not a serious cause for concern. The condition has several names, and is most commonly known as globus pharyngeus.
In this article, I will describe my symptoms, the diagnostic medical procedure, and the simple things I need to do to get rid of the feeling of a lump in my throat.
I am not a medical professional, nor am I offering any medical advice. This page only tells my story.
Symptoms of Globus Pharyngeus
It all started about a month ago with the feeling of a lump in my throat. It's a strange sensation, as I would imagine I would feel if someone were choking me, but not quite enough to actually block the airway. Then I became aware of a few more symptoms, including:
- Feeling of a lump in my throat, which eased during eating
- Mild chest pains
- Heartburn and gas
- Bloated stomach (not always a symptom, but it was for me)
A Few Simple Lifestyle Changes
The best part of my visit to the doctor today was I was told this condition will go away. Just a few simple lifestyle changes for me:
- Reduce stress.
- Elevate my head when I sleep, so my neck is above my stomach.
- Eating certain foods only in the morning, like dairy, acidic fruits (oranges, kiwi fruit, etc.) and no more than one cup of coffee per day.
- If I have a morning cup of coffee, I need to drink an equal amount of water.
- Avoiding fatty foods a few hours before bedtime, and no eating at all within an hour of going to sleep.
- One month of medication, with a follow-up visit to my GP at that time.
Update: After following these suggestions, the lump in throat sensation is now gone!
Different Names, Same Condition
Globus Pharyngeus or Cricopharyngeus Spasm or lump in my throat.
Which Term Did Your Doctor Use?
Anatomy of the Larnyx
So . . . What Is Globus Pharyngeus?
Globus pharyngeus occurs when the cricopharyngeal muscle becomes too tight. This muscle is located behind, and is attached to, the cricoid cartilage. The muscle acts like a sphincter to prevent food from coming back into the mouth after swallowing. When it goes into spasm, it feels like a lump sensation in the throat.
What causes the cricopharyngeal muscle to become too tight, you might ask? Most of the time, it happens as a result of reflux and stress.
A Good Explanation of Globus Pharyngeus
How the Doctor Confirmed the Diagnosis
My doctor wanted to see what was going on in my throat. First he sprayed a numbing agent into my nose and throat. Then he used a trans-nasal endoscope to see what was going on. He stuck it down my throat, entering through my nose. The numbing agent worked perfectly, so it really wasn't too bad—just odd-feeling. Even after the numbing agent wore off, there was no pain at all.
Have You Ever Felt a Lump in Your Throat?
© 2009 Rhonda Albom