Salivary Gland Issue?

Hi -- Anyone out there that has a lump in their salivary gland? I have one right below my jawline under my ear. I just saw my endo last week to prepare for my 2nd WBS. I had one last year and 153mc of RAI. I asked her about the lump in my salivary gland and she didn't think it was cancer - she said it was "too high up in my neck" that she doesn't normally see cancer in that location. I think I should be comforted by her not being very concerned - to date I feel like I've gotten very good care from her. I did have issues with my salivary glands for months last summer/fall, so I'm guessing it may be scar tissue, but she wouldn't confirm that. She said we'll know for sure after the scan.

I'm sure you all understand that any lump makes me nervous, I had quite a lot of lymph involvement and still had one lymph node that was cancerous on my WBS last year. Thoughts?

Take care,
Kristin

PS - LID is great for weight loss, it just bores the pounds right off! It makes weight watchers look super fabulous!

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could it be a clogged duct? I have that going on right now. It's better this morning than yesterday. This is the first time I've had such a hard "lump". I have issues off and on. Usually sour candies take care of it and I always increase my intake of water when I'm having problems.

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Hi Shari --

I was thinking that was a possibility. I've tried heat, massage, water, sour candy and it won't go away (it's been there for weeks now). I do think it changes sizes and locations a bit, which leads me to believe it's something to do with the salivary gland and not more cancer. It is hard too, like you mentioned. It's just the not knowing and vague answer from the doctor that make me a bit leery.

I wish you the best!

Take care,
Kristin

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I have two marbles under my chin, they are my salivary glands. I also have severe dry mouth. My PCP is looking into a patch to increase saliva. Nobody seems worried about them but comiserates with my misery. Ugggh!

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I am just now starting to investigate my own salivary gland situation. I had RAI about 16 months ago and TT several months before that (Hurthle cell carcinoma diagnosis). The severe dry mouth and tender salivary glands started about 6 weeks ago. I have dry eyes and frequently blurred vision, too. My PCP is sending me to a rheumatologist to investigate Sjogren's syndrome. Based on what I have read on this site, other people have had onset of dry mouth a long time after they had RAI, but were not diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder. In my case, I don't yet know if this is autoimmune or just salivary glands that have withered and died. Commenters on this site commonly say there is not much you can do about it- try hard candy, gum, Biotene, heat treatment, etc. and hope something works. I also don't yet know if this is a condition that tends to flare, or if I will have have these symptoms from now on. (I hope it's not option 2.)

So it could be, Kristen, that this is not cancer but that something is happening to your salivary glands. You have the lump; are you experiencing dry mouth?

Good luck to you!

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Hi bugphd85 -- I've never had a problem with dry mouth, thankfully. But my salivary glands have swollen up and been painful many, many times. It's just the first time I've had a persistent lump in one of them. The reason I'm not super worried is that it's in the same spot that always swelled up in the past, so it seems like it must be my salivary gland, plus my endo seemed not to be worried about it. And I know lots of folks on this site have issues with their salivary glands as a result of RAI. It is frustrating that there's not a whole lot you can do about it, except for the remedies you mentioned.

Good luck with resolving your issue as well!

sgeray - hopefully you can lose your marbles (under you chin, that is :-) I feel your pain!

Take care!
Kristin

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kg1968, I lost my marbles years ago. lol I started this salivary gland during radiation and it never went away, I was able to control for a bit but now its got staying power. (Think it likes me)...good luck and best wishes to all of us with this issue. I started the low iodine diet today and was mixing the meat with the veggies (veggies have moisture). The fun never stops...weeeeeeee

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Sgeray, when did you have your RAI and whole body scan? And how are your taste buds doing?

I had the RAI on Sept 17 and the WBS on Sept 24. I went home and had a nap (it's was a harrowing anxiety filled experience and I was exhausted! When I woke 2 hours later my parotid and salivary glands were swollen and my taste buds were fried.

Fast forward 4 1/2 months and dozens of massages later and the swelling is about 1/2 gone and I have fleeting moments of revived taste buds. I'll be having a tracer dose RAI and WBS in about 8 weeks so I'm rather concerned about more damage.

When is your next RAI?
Thanks,
Oreen

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I'm pretty sure I'm experiencing my first salivary gland issue my neck and gums on my left side are very sore. I don't have a lump that I can feel. What can I do to help this situation? I'm between doctors right now. I had RAI on Nov 29th.

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JessaBert -- The remedies I'm aware of are drink lots of water, eat sour candy, massage, put heat packs on your salivary glands. There are also products for dry mouth called Biotene you can get at the drug store that help.

Take care,
Kristin

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Thanks Kristin.

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Hello All. I agree with all of the advice above. As far as the sour candy goes, I used the sugar-free Icebreaker Sour breath mints. They are sour and make you salivate (that's the objective) without all of the sugar. My dentist had suggested trying to use something sugar-free and these seem to do the trick when I have flare-ups. Lots of water, heat, etc. helps too. Good luck!

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