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missjena's avatar

Can past scalp infections and chronic itchy scalp cause permanent palpable supraclavicular lymph nodes?

Asked by missjena (918points) December 6th, 2008 from iPhone

I’m really trying to figure out the cause of my several palpable supraclavicle nodes. I had a FNA biopsy and core with flow cytometry and no answer. Benign hyperplasia but still they havent gone down. My doctor mentioned scalp drainage can cause several palpable enlarged collarbone nodes. Any one know about this? Anyone good with the anatomy or a doctor?

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11 Answers

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

Seems that if the blood work comes back okay, they’re an after effect of infection? Scalp drainage sounds unpleasant…

missjena's avatar

thanks idk mine have been there for months im running out of ideas this can be.

augustlan's avatar

Backing away, quietly.

shilolo's avatar

Hi missjena. With all due respect, haven’t we (meaning you) visiting this issue before, multiple times (by my count, this is your 7th question regarding your supraclavicular nodes)? You’ve had an extensive evaluation including extremely sophisticated and expensive tests, biopsies, 2nd opinions etc. and they have all concluded that these are benign (which is also what I suggested to you, many times). Perhaps you need to speak with someone about managing anxiety. It is not normal to be so fixated on one thing for so long. Just be glad you are healthy, and move on with your life (or seek counseling).

missjena's avatar

@shilolo- How are you? I apologize it’s just I know that lymph node palpability means they are enlarged. When they are enlarged that is a symptom and I don’t know my cause and it effects me tremendously, obviously. One of doctors I saw wanted me to get another test such as PET scan and one doctor told me not to so now I am thinking if I should have. I was recently tested for an autoimmune disease was supposedly a falsepositive. Idk I should just give up and pray.

shilolo's avatar

The body is mysterious. We do not understand everything. In fact, we understand only a small fraction of the signs and symptoms of disease. At this point, I wouldn’t even rate your enlarged nodes as a “symptom”. They are benign, reactive lymph nodes. Done and done.

To give you a personal example, I have a single palpable node under my left collarbone. It has been there for some time. I also have palpable nodes in other areas that have been there for as long as I can remember. As long as they don’t change in size, shape, characteristics, etc., I don’t worry, and I have never had them evaluated.

missjena's avatar

Shilolo words cannot explain how you just eased my mind in just talking to me especially that your a doctor. I have several in my left collar bone and maybe 2 in my right. I think if I had a malignancy my ct scan would of showed something off. Im just not to sure if they are multiplying because i feel more or I am just getting better at finding them. To be honest what got me on this lymph node kick again was the pain I started feeling in my collarbone and when I pressed on the muscle in there I felt a lymph node pushing on my nerve which was bring referred pain to my chest so I started to panic thinking they are growing. My doctor wants to repeat a ct scan just to see if theres been a change in 5 months. If a biopsy (even thought it was not excisional which I know most doctors prefer) shows a benign reactive lymph node but then since that implies an inflammatory process shouldn’t it have decreased in size? My doctor said these are shotty nodes I feel so many of them. I just wish they weren’t in this particular area.

shilolo's avatar

It is fine to let your doctor follow them over time. If they stay the same size, or shrink, that is good. Pathologists call them benign reactive nodes for lack of something better to say. Essentially, they are just saying that they see some extra lymphocytes in the node, but that they look normal and healthy. Thus, benign (normal, healthy, non-malignant), reactive (reacting to something we don’t know, likely normal or nothing) nodes.

To a certain extent, you are probably a victim of today’s medical world. Years ago, a doctor would probably have tried to reassure you over several visits that everything is ok. Now, doctor’s are rushed, patients get (mis)information from the web, push for tests (like CT scans) and sue if something goes wrong. So, of course, a doctor will order multiple tests if you complain and are anxious about something. From what you have said, your tests have been negative or normal, with no sign of cancer, autoimmune disease (save your low titre ANA) or infection.

I suggest, again, that you try to relax (or seek out someone to help you), and follow up with your doctor at regular intervals.

missjena's avatar

Thank you for the informative advice. My ANA was 1;160 but the rest of the blood work was negative and since I have no symptoms besides enlarged lymph nodes of an autoimmune she said it was more than likely false positive because they are pretty common. I was told to maybe see an infectious disease doctor but Idk what I could have Ive been HIV tested. I just dont want to have to check them every so ofter to see “did they get larger?” for the rest of my life but they feel like they def havent shrunk. I am speaking with someone who helps with my anxieties. The lymph node thing is the only thing I am worried about. Other than that I swear I don;t worry like this. Someone recently told me they had an enlarged node and it cut off their blood supply to their brain and almost died and now Im worried about that pain. But you are right thank you for talking with me as always sometimes its nice to speak with someone who really knows what they are talking about. I have to stop googling Ive practically read every website anyway.

shilolo's avatar

I am an Infectious Diseases doctor. We don’t just check for HIV, FYI. That said, with no other symptoms other than enlarged nodes, I’m not sure an ID evaluation is necessary. Best of luck to you.

missjena's avatar

And it seems like your a great doctor thanks again. Take care happy holidays

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