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Head and Neck Cancer

Lost Sense of Taste & 9 mm Nodule

10/18/2011

Question:

I have lost my sense of taste 2 months ago. All other medical & medication factors have been ruled out. Some difficulty swallowing at times & my salivary gland under R side of tongue seems larger than other. I have been to my IM & ENT. Found 9 mm nodule in parotid gland by MRI. ENT doesn`t feel it is significant and stated I may have to live with my loss of taste. Have lost 12 lbs. I have been unable to find a reason for lost of taste. I requested FNA of nodule because I am trying to find answers. Any suggestions?

Answer:

It is very unlikely that the parotid nodule has caused loss of smell. This may be followed with serial imaging. Work up for loss of smell should include ruling out infection, allergy, trauma, tumors etc. Your ENT (ear, nose and throat doctor) should be able to help you with this.

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Response by:

Yash J Patil, MD Yash J Patil, MD
Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati