Issues with swallowing can be due to multiple causes but an ENT Specialist should be consulted to review any new swallowing problems that do not resolve. Associated symptoms such as weight loss, hoarseness, neck lump, painful swallowing or ear pain should raise the concern of a possible malignant (cancer) cause and should be investigated urgently.
Salivary gland disease
The parotid and sub-mandibular glands are part of the salivary gland system and can be affected by infections, stones, tumours and other inflammatory processes. Any new lumps in the parotid or sub-mandibular glands should be reviewed by an ENT specialist with an interest in Head and Neck cancer.
Thyroid gland disease
Most thyroid masses are benign, however, the incidence of thyroid cancer is rising. If you feel a lump in your thyroid gland then it is important to have a thyroid ultrasound to assess the nature of the lump.