Read below about neck swelling on one side, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your neck swelling on one side from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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8 Potential Neck Swelling on One Side Causes

Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.

  1. 1.Acute Thyroiditis

    Acute thyroiditis is a rare inflammation of the thyroid gland caused by an infection, radiation, medication, or trauma.

    2 weeks - 2 months with treatment

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    sore throat, fever, being severely ill, hoarse voice, pain in the front of the neck
    Symptoms that always occur with acute thyroiditis:
    pain in the front of the neck
    Urgency:
    Hospital emergency room
  2. 2.Retropharyngeal Abscess (Adult)

    Retropharyngeal abscess is a collection of pus in the tissues in the back of the throat. It is a potentially life-threatening medical condition.

    Good prognosis if caught early

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    sore throat, loss of appetite, fever, shortness of breath, being severely ill
    Urgency:
    Hospital emergency room
  3. 3.Uterine Fibroids

    Uterine fibroids are noncancerous tumors in the uterus. They are common in women of childbearing age.

    Treatment ranges from medication to surgical removal of the fibroid.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    vaginal bleeding, pelvis pain, abdominal cramps (stomach cramps), painful periods, irregular period
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  4. 4.Non - Specific Neck Pain

    Neck pain is discomfort in any of the structures in the neck. These include the muscles, nerves, bones (vertebrae), and the disks between the bones. This may not have an identifiable cause.

    1-2 days

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    neck pain, mild neck pain, pain in the back of the neck
    Symptoms that always occur with non-specific neck pain:
    neck pain
    Symptoms that never occur with non-specific neck pain:
    severe neck pain, neck pain from an injury, fever
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment

    Neck Swelling on One Side Checker

    Take a quiz to find out why you’re having neck swelling on one side.

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  5. 5.Neck Sprain

    The neck is made up of 7 bones held together by muscles and ligaments. Any stretch of these muscles or ligaments causes a sprain, which will cause pain and affect your ability to move the neck.

    Most neck sprains get better within a few weeks.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    headache, pain in the back of the neck, shoulder pain, difficulty moving the neck, neck pain
    Symptoms that always occur with neck sprain:
    pain in the back of the neck
    Symptoms that never occur with neck sprain:
    fever
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit
  6. 6.Common Cold

    The common cold is a viral infection of the upper respiratory tract.

    The common cold resolves within 7 to 10 days.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, headache, cough, sore throat, congestion
    Symptoms that never occur with common cold:
    being severely ill, severe muscle aches, rash, severe headache, sinus pain
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  7. 7.Rheumatoid Arthritis

    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a form of arthritis that causes pain, swelling, stiffness and loss of function in your joints. It can affect any joint but is common in the wrist and fingers. RA is an autoimmune disorder, meaning that it is caused by the immune system incorrectly attacking the joints when it shouldn't.

    RA is a chronic disease which requires lifelong control.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, depressed mood, joint pain, muscle aches, daytime sleepiness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  8. 8.Temporomandibular Joint (Tmj) Dysfunction Disorder

    The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is located in front of the ear, and it connects the jaw to the side of the head. Temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is a painful condition which can be caused by excess tension in jaw mucles, faulty alignment between upper and lower teeth, arthritis in the joint, or injury of the jaw or face.

    Outcome is highly case-dependent.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    dizziness, pain, restricted movement, and clicking sounds from jaw, history of headaches, jaw pain, pain in the back of the neck
    Symptoms that always occur with temporomandibular joint (tmj) dysfunction disorder:
    pain, restricted movement, and clicking sounds from jaw
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Neck Swelling on One Side

  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.If you touch the swollen area, is there pain?
  • Q.Do food or drinks get stuck when you swallow?
  • Q.Do you have a sore throat?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our neck swelling on one side symptom checker to find out more.

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Neck Swelling on One Side Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced neck swelling on one side have also experienced:

    • 10% Neck Pain on One Side
    • 3% Neck Bump
    • 2% Stiff Neck
  • People who have experienced neck swelling on one side had symptoms persist for:

    • 32% Less Than a Week
    • 25% Over a Month
    • 25% Less Than a Day
  • People who have experienced neck swelling on one side were most often matched with:

    • 20% Retropharyngeal Abscess (Adult)
    • 12% Acute Thyroiditis
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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