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Distinguishing Globus from Other Conditions

From a medical point of view, it is important to distinguish the globus sensation from dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing. Unlike globus, dysphagia usually indicates a demonstrable cause, and mandates investigation of the esophagus. Heartburn commonly occurs with globus, as it does in people generally. However, the two conditions do not appear to be causally related, and treatment of heartburn does not reliably benefit the globus.

Globus uniquely occurs between meals, and is somewhat relieved by swallowing something, often a glass of water. On the other hand, dysphagia occurs during the swallowing of food or sometimes liquids. It gives the sensation that something is stuck in the gullet – often below the throat. An attempt to swallow in this situation seems to make things worse.

"Red Flag" Signs and Symptoms that may indicate a More Serious Disorder

  • Neck or throat pain
  • Bleeding from the mouth or throat
  • Weight loss
  • Pain or difficulty on swallowing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Mass in the throat or mouth confirmed by a doctor’s examination
  • Progressive worsening of the symptom

Working with Your Doctor

patient doctor

Successful relationships with healthcare providers are an important part of managing life with a long-term digestive disorder.

Doctor–Patient Communication

How to Help Your Doctor Help You

How to Talk to Your Doctor