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Swollen Lymph Glands (cont.)

Swollen Lymph Nodes Medical Treatment

A lymph node that is rapidly growing over one to two days has a different cause and treatment than generalized swelling of lymph nodes that occurs over a few months. Tell a doctor about the rapidly growing nodes at the time of examination because this helps to establish a diagnosis.

  • Standard treatment for swollen lymph nodes may include pain relievers and medicine to lower a fever, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen. Warm compresses and elevation may help reduce and resolve swelling.
  • If the cause of the swelling is infection, the doctor may prescribe antibiotics or antiviral medications.
  • If there is a localized abscess, it may need to be drained by cutting open the skin and then filling the opening with packing.
  • For swelling due to malignancy, the treatment may involve surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy.
  • If a person has an immune disorder, he/she may be prescribed medication to help with the disease.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/15/2013

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