globus phryngeus

What is Globus pharyngeus?

Globus pharyngeus, also called globus sensation or globus, is the feeling of having something stuck in the throat. It is an overwhelming feeling of a lump or foreign object being lodged in a person’s throat.

It is common, with 22–45% of people experiencing it at least once in their lifetime.

Globus pharyngeus causes

Globus pharyngeus is often caused by inflammation of the throat. Exact cause behind globus pharyngeus is unknown. Factors which are connected includes:-
Post nasal drip.
Gastro-esophageal reflux.
Lingual tonsils.
Cricopharyngeal spasm.
Enlarged thyroid.
Hiatus hernia.
Chronic sinusitis.
Cervical osteophytes.
Foreign body such as fish/chicken bone.
Laryngo-pharyngeal cancer.
Anxiety

Globus pharyngeus diagnosis

Diagnosis of globus pharyngeus is typically a diagnosis of exclusion.

A detailed medical and personal history is taken which includes dietary habits, sleep schedule, history of smoking and alcohol intake and any recent stressors in life. Next step is a physical examination which includes a general physical examination, detailed evaluation of ear, nose and throat. Once clinical examination is over, few differential diagnoses are shortlisted and tests advised based on these. These may include blood tests, endoscopy, X-rays and ultrasound of the neck initially and CT or MRI scan eventually.

Globus pharyngeus management

Reassurance of the patient is recommendable when no cause can be found.

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If a cause is identified, treat the cause symptomatically or, if possible, systemically.

Globus pharyngeus Differential diagnosis

Differential diagnosis must be made from Eagle syndrome which uses the patient’s description of “something caught in my throat” as a diagnostic tool.

Eagle syndrome is an elongation of the styloid process causing irritation to nerves and muscles in the region resulting in a number of unusual symptoms.

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