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New member
Feb 10, 2009
Learn about ALS
Hello Everyone,

I am a 29 year old female.
For the past two months I have had difficulty swallowing saliva. It feels almost like there is something blocking my throat that prevents it from getting down all the way. This feeling is constant. My neck and throat is also tender to touch.

The feeling is maddening and so very scary. I have been to several doctors with no help, but my husband and I recently fell upon ALS and it's symptoms. Does this swallowing difficulty sound normal for a person with ALS?

Any input would be appreciated!

Firstly you are well below the age of normal onset. I have bulbar which began when I was 56. classic age. I first had MORE swallowing, not difficulty swallowing, and slurred speech, at no time was my neck and throat tender to the touch. I am no doctor, but that sounds more like a glandular problem, or tonsils. It does not sound anything like I had, which was diagnosed within 2 weeks of comprensive tests. Wish you luck searching for what is wrong.
Hi ... This does not sound like an early ALS symptom. In ALS, bulbar symptoms (bulbar is the part of the brain that controls speech, swallowing, etc.) start with slurred speech.

I am pretty well into bulbar symptoms (going into my fourth year), and I have never experienced that "lump in the throat" feeling. As I understand it, bulbar symptoms that start with swallowing issues point AWAY from ALS, so that is good news. What I have also heard/read is that the feeling of a lump or blockage in the throat may be caused by anxiety ... it's a very common reaction to stress. Are you having any particular stress in your life right now that you can pinpoint?

As to the neck and throat tenderness, I don't know. Those are NOT ALS symptoms, but you might want to see your doctor about it, and also talk about anxiety, if you think that's appropriate.

Hope this helps. Good luck!
No, what you describe are not symptoms that I've heard of being connected to bulbar onset. Like the others, I too have never had a lump in the throat feeling. Trust your doctors and get to the bottom of why you have tenderness there, as this also is not a symptom of ALS. Have you had your thyroid checked? Good luck to you. :)
Thank you ladies for you insight!

I have had this feeling for so long without answers that my husband and I are looking for them ourselves. I read many articles about having excessive saliva and difficulty swallowing saliva constantly (which I have) are possible symptoms. However, my other symptoms (tenderness of the throat, a clicking/popping sensation when attempting to swallow, feeling like there is a block in my throat that prevents me from swallowing) I did not hear/read about. I have had my thyroid checked, it looked good. I HAVE felt a lot of stress and anxiety lately just not knowing what is wrong with me. I really appreciate all your help and ideas.

This week has opened my eyes to ALS.... A condition I had never heard/read about before my research. I find you all to be incredibly brave. Although it sounds like these symptoms I am experiencing are not related to ALS I plan to continue to learn more about it and what I can do to help. God bless you all!
Add me to the list of bulbar folks! I was 47 at diagnosed, bulbar onset, and still have nothing that feels like a "lump" in my throat.

I don't recall if you've been to your primary dr or not, but sounds like a good place to start before worry sits on top of you.

wishing you the best,
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