Lump in my throat


I have a lump in my throat.

It started in June or so. I thought it might be a cold, or a cold sore, or something like tonsillitis (I still have my tonsils).

Almost two months later, I still have a lump in my throat.

The other day, I gave in and went to my doctor. He wasn’t available, so I saw a nurse-practitioner instead. She was terrific, and tested me for everything under the sun.

Final (preliminary) diagnosis: it’s not bacterial. It’s just a lump.

Is it viral? Is it – um – cancerous? I don’t know yet. I will see a specialist soon. (I’m still tremendously relieved that it wasn’t something stupid and infectious like streptococcus.)

Maybe it’s the family inheritance: cancer.

Or just a cold sore in the wrong place.

Here’s a story:

Back in 1978, I traveled to the (then) Soviet Union with a tour group. We started in (then) Leningrad, and then split into two groups: my group went to the Caucasus and Central Asia, and the other group went to Siberia. We were to meet in Moscow about two weeks later.

In Moscow, one of my fellow travelers who’d gone to Siberia – a lively and funny woman – told me this: “A flea bit me on the eyelid while I was sleeping, and my eye swelled terribly. They took me to the hospital in Novosibirsk, and very evidently they had no idea what to do with me; I spent days in the hospital listening to doctors and nurses talking about me in Russian, and I had no idea what they were saying. Finally they brought in a translator, and I told him that a flea had bitten me, and he told the doctors, and they were very relieved. And the translator laughed, and told me: ‘They were very relieved. They were convinced they were going to have to amputate your eyelid.’”

Remember: even when you have a lump, it could always be worse. The doctors might amputate your eyelid.

About Loren Williams
Gay, partnered, living in Providence, working at a local university. Loves: books, movies, TV. Comments and recriminations can be sent to

5 Responses to Lump in my throat

  1. That is a terrifying eyelid story.

    I always imagine the worst from every little thing. Now I am trying to think of something else reassuring to say.

    • I’m like you: I jump to the worst possible conclusion. But it’s too early to worry yet. I had a CAT scan this morning, which was very entertaining, and the radiologist gave me a nice bottle of juice afterward for being a good patient.

  2. I hope the results come back soon and are good! I will be watching for them!

  3. starproms says:

    Good luck with the results Loren. I hope it turns out not to be serious. I have a history of tonsillitis when I was a child, culminating in a serious bout of quinses when I was 16 and doing my exams. Many years later, I noticed a lump in my throat. I went to the doctor who referred me to the hospital specialist, who told me it was scar tissue and would never go away. There are many types of lumps. Fingers crossed 🙂

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