Avatar universal

Click when swallowing


I was wondering if someone could help me.  For a few weeks now I have this click in my throat when I swallow.  Not when I am drinking water or eating, but just during normal swallowing.  It doesn't click when my head is down or up, but it clicks when I am looking straight.  If I put my fingers just above adams apple I can feel a click.

Please help me to identify what it could be.

Thank you,
183 Responses
Avatar universal
It has been 9 days since I made my post and not one response.  Was it just ignored or no one knows what it could be?
152264 tn?1280354657
I'm sure it's that no one has felt able to tell you what it might be or offer advice. It's frustrating to post and not get any responses (I've had that happen to me many times), but sometimes people really just don't know, especially about unusual symptoms. Please don't feel ignored.

Also remember this particular forum (ENT) is not an official ask-the-doctor forum where a doctor looks at and answers all questions. I do see there's one or two doctors posting here, as well as an audiologist, but they probably didn't know what to say either. Also, they may not be reading every question (everyone is limited in their time), only ones that pop out at them as ones they might be able to be helpful with.

I have no clue what could be causing your click. Try asking your doctor at your next visit (unless it's something that is hurting or really bothering you, in which case ask sooner), and ask for a referral to an ENT if the doctor can't help you.

Another thing you might try is reposting your question more specifically, i.e., "Click in throat when swallowing," in case someone sees it who knows more about throat issues but didn't open your question because they assumed it was a click in your ear. Might not make any difference--but you never know!

Best of luck,
Nancy T. (not a health professional)
Avatar universal
Thank you very much for you response and suggestions Nancy!
242516 tn?1368223905
yeah, Nancy's right, I'm a doc and wouldn't be able to guess what that click is from.  Ask your doc to look down there with a mirror

An ENT has a laryngoscope that they can use to look down there
Avatar universal
It has been more than 7 month and I still have this click, I went to ENT, did a video swallowing test and my ENT said that everything is fine.  I had tonsilectomy 2 weeks prior the click started and I feel that this click is the after cause of the surgery.  Of course ENT will say that everything is fine, because he is the one that did the surgery...  I keep touching my wind tunnel and pushing it with my fingers to the right, something clicks, then after I swallow next few times there is no click and then it comes back again.  Very tired of this clicking sound...  Don't know if it ever will go away.
152264 tn?1280354657
Bummer... sorry you still have this. Why not get a second opinion from another ENT?

Nancy T.
207227 tn?1271416978
I am with you. blk133, I sent you an email. I have the same thing.  If anyone reads this and can help me and blk133, so be it. Where is HOUSE when you need him?
207227 tn?1271416978
Sorry Ignore last post here is the oneI have seen three ENT's. I have had MRI contrast-negative, CT contrast-negative, and three laryngoscopies-all

negative. I will be doing ok for a few days (small amount of clicking and no pains) then I will have days where I

have the clicking, occipital headache on the affected side, pain deep in the neck where the clicking is (in the

triangle of the neck region at the level of Adams apple and below jaw), twinges of pain to my ear, jaw, and

sometimes teeth. This is all on the same side that is clicking, the right side. I have had no trauma to the neck, no

tonsils removed or surgeries. You mean no one in the medical field knows what is going on? This is crazy. The

third ENT I saw is a professor at a medical school. I am really frustrated and at a loss.
Avatar universal
I have the same problem and will see a specialist next week.

I didn't have any surgery in the area but I think I had an infection in the throat which caused high fever last year. It is all fine until recently I noticed the clicking when swallowing.
Avatar universal
I have it now too. In addition, when I turn my head to the left or nod up and down a click occurs in the middle of my shoulders and the top of my neck near my head.

Going to an ENT.

I read that this unusual symptom was treated successfully at UCLA by a team of surgeons who took it on. They cured every person! They trimmed down bone fragments where it had been shattered during one surgery and thryoid muscle was trimmed for another. They had to isolate the clicking sound before performing the surgury. What lucky folks to have found a cure!
Avatar universal
Good luck!  Keep us (clickers) posted
Avatar universal
An excellent ENT believes it's STRESS related similar to globulus histericus or some such thing. Interestingly, after being reassured it went away for the rest of the day.

Did the test down the nose, which must be their gold standard test for ENT docs. He is excellent and has an excellent bedside manner. He really listened and has the gift of persuasion as well. I'm hopeful that it is stress.

Dinner time was frustrating as heck though so I'm not so sure. He said see him in two months as a follow up to the syndrome but he's so popular I can't get in until January 09. Maybe I'll be cured. Either way, he wants to see me. "Clicky Throat Saga" to be continued...
Avatar universal
Click still there. Going to have ultrasound on thyroid tomorrow.

Bet it's not related.

Recently diagnosed with Lyme.

I bet it's related to that. My neck snaps, crackles and pops and since my esophogus is near my neck, well, it just joined in the fun.
Avatar universal
:(  I thought he cured you by telling you that it was stress.  I was told that it could be a thyroid that's causing this click as well, but I never checked it.  
Let us know your results...
Avatar universal
Results of thyroid NORMAL!  I was hoping that was it -- even though I hate bad news, I'd take it over not knowing why I awakened one day to not only neck popping like mad, but my throat!

I believe the ENT that said it was "throat crepitus" or globulus hystericus. It turns out is is most likely crepitus At least globulus hystericus is curable. My clicky throat is possibly related to what was later a diagnosis of Lyme. Am still seeking answers regarding LD and hopefully with the right treatment the "crepitus" will resolve in my throat and neck as well.

It ain't pleasant this throat click thing. Popcorn does not go down very smoothly!
Avatar universal
Hey Cindy,
how's your click?  Is it any better?  About 4 days ago my sholder started to hurt and my wife asked me to take advil, so for a 3 days in a row I was taking 2 pills in the morning, I think when I take Advil my throat doesn't click as often.  It doesn't disappear completely, it still clicks here and there, but not as much.  Do you mind taking Advil for a few days in a row and see if it helps you as well?
Advil def seems to help my clicking.
Avatar universal
I can try Advil. If it's an NSAID, I'm not surprised it works. Will let you know.

I am being treated for LD afterall. Bummer diagnosis since there's no cure.
652360 tn?1264492519
Your problems sound exactly similar to mine, I have been diagnosed with a larngeal abnormality after an injury in which the superior cornu of the thyroid cartilage is rubbing against the hyoid bone, I had occipital headache, jaw and ear pain and crepitus when I rotate or press in on my throat, clicking with swallowing is a treatable condition if you search the medical literature, I am actually getting surgery at UCLA for this condition. See the forum on hyoid bone problems on this site and you will see a plethora of information regarding your possible conditions, what doctors know, and how to treat.
Avatar universal
Exact same thing for me blk133.  I also had my tonsils out and now I notice this annoying clicking on my right side.  I've been experiencing all the same symptoms.  Clicking when swallowing saliva but not eating or drinking.  Seems more prominent when my head it turned to the right instead of left. MY ENT who performed the surgury seems to feel that it's the Hyoid bone rubbing against a gland or tendon but could not answer why other than an automical abnormality.  I was taking Tylenol and it seemed to help a little as well. A couple of drinks also seems to relieve the symptoms 99% but always comes back the next morning. Guess I'll have to stay drunk!! I also found solutions on a couple of other sites  that I will try.  One sufferer said that she tried favoring the side that did not hurt for a week while swallowing and the pain went away after about a week. I guess it's the analogy of staying off a sprained ankle to let it heal. The other person performed neck excercises recommended by a physiologist.  He said the excercises completely resolved the clicking after 4 days of excercising.  Too bad he didn't leave instructions.  Anyway I'll let you know how I make out.  Please let me know if any of you come across other solutions or things that may have worked for you.

Good luck
Avatar universal
I think it's annoying as &*(%. It sort of comes and goes, but mostly is here to stay. UCLA will do some kind of outpatient procedure that cures it.

My click is like a thump. Or it feels like my esophagus is too narrow to swallow.

Maybe it's the Lyme. You know the disease that doesn't exist, and there is no cure or test to confirm it.

My neck clicks whenever it's turned as well. Sometimes my jaw clicks making eating noisy.
652360 tn?1264492519
i know its so annoying ruining my life
652360 tn?1264492519
I am also wondering if this clicking in the throat with head rotation can effect the jaw positioning because my jaw started clicking ocassionally  too ever since I got this and its hard to yawn
Avatar universal
hello...yea tmd (or as most people call it tmj which is only the bone rather than the actual condition)...well yea it *****.
i got my wisdom teeth cut out almost 1 1/2 ago and the left side of my jaw has been popping ever since. every time i open my mouth it pops...kinda hurts but i would say the migraines are worse. i get 2 almost every month. i lose all of my periphial vision in my left eye each time for about an hour before the actual migraine...it really *****
if you havent seen an ent you should

best of luck :)
Avatar universal
I don't have any problems with my jaw so far, it's the person above your post has it.  But I still have the click in my throat.  Now that I've seen some images of throat on the internet I can tell that my click is right where they hyoid bone is.
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Ear, Nose & Throat Community

Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Think a loved one may be experiencing hearing loss? Here are five warning signs to watch for.
Discover the common causes of and treatments for a sore throat.
Learn about what actually causes your temperature to spike.
Find out which foods you should watch out for.
Family medicine doctor Enoch Choi, MD helps differentiate between the common cold and more threatening (bacterial) infections
Dr. Steven Park reveals 5 reasons why breathing through your nose could change your life