Lymph Node Problems Behind The Ears

What Causes Lump Behind The Ear?

Lump behind the ear can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'troubling' to 'critical'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose lump behind the ear, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "lump behind the ear" as a symptom.  Here are six possibilities:
  • CLL Leukemia
  • Lymphatic Congestion
  • Vasectomy Side-Effects
  • Infectious Mononucleosis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Enlarged Lymph Nodes

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
current atypical headaches
joint pain/swelling/stiffness
minor joint pain/swelling/stiffness
swollen cervical nodes
long-term hoarse voice
highly elevated lymphocyte count
sensitivity to bright light
high systolic blood pressure
swollen inguinal nodes
slight abdominal distension
... and more than 30 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of lump behind the ear:
Cause Probability Status
Enlarged Lymph Nodes 98% Confirm
Sarcoidosis 73% Possible
CLL Leukemia 19% Unlikely
Vasectomy Side-Effects 4% Ruled out
Lymphatic Congestion 1% Ruled out
Infectious Mononucleosis 0% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate recent swollen/painful lymph nodes, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
BEHIND EARS: Do you have any swollen or tender lymph nodes here?
Possible responses:
→ Don't know
→ No
→ Yes, swollen but not tender
→ Yes, tender but not swollen
→ Yes, swollen and tender
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate either no postauricular node problems or postauricular node problems, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Enlarged Lymph Nodes

Enlarged Lymph Nodes also suggests the following possibilities:

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