A Journal of Observational Laryngology

Clinical observations, anecdotes, and insights which other clinicians may want to consider and test with further research.

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Cricopharyngeus Spasm and What to Do About It

By Robert W. Bastian, MD


The information found below is a Q&A supplement to a teaching video on cricopharyngeus spasm:

Tell me more about the cricopharyngeus muscle. Where is it, and what is it for?

It is a sphincter, which is a circular muscle that makes a ring around the uppermost part of the esophagus to serve as a “valve” or “gateway” between the throat and esophagus. In the gastrointestinal tract, there is a series of additional sphincters: between lower esophagus and stomach; at the outlet of stomach into small intestine, and so forth down to the anus. Each of these sphincter muscles “at rest” is in a contracted state. When “in use,” each sphincter is momentarily relaxed.

When we swallow, the cricopharyngeus muscle sphincter must relax for a brief moment to let food or liquid out of the throat, through the sphincter, and into the upper esophagus. (It also relaxes momentarily, by the way, to release air from below upwards when we belch.) Normally we are unaware of this sphincter muscle because it functions outside of our consciousness.

You’ve used the word “spasm” as the cause of the sensation, but can you clarify what you mean?

By use of the word spasm, we don’t mean a cramp or a charley horse. It is instead sustained hypertonicity of the upper esophageal sphincter, or cricopharyngeus muscle. It is over-contracted. That’s why we become aware of it when this overcontraction gives rise to a feeling of pressure, choking, etc. defined as cricopharyngeus spasm.

By analogy, we are normally unaware of neck muscles that we use to hold up our heads. Yet, we have all had the experience of tight posterior neck muscles that we find to be bothersome and to intrude sufficiently into quality of life that we might ask a friend “Can you rub my neck?” In similar fashion, cricopharyngeus spasm often intrudes into a person’s mental space, and becomes oppressive, but there seems to be no way to relieve the sensation. Not only that, but the sensation causes us to worry, partly because many people with this problem search in vain to find someone to explain this to them, and they are therefore unable to put aside their worry about the sensation.

What is the list of features or symptoms that constitute the syndrome of cricopharyngeus spasm?

  1. Location of the sensation is at the level of the cricoid cartilage in the mid-to low neck.
  2. The nature of sensation is often described with words like choking, pressure, constriction, swelling…. Or, “It feels like a wad of phlegm.” One other particularly common description is “It feels like there is something stuck in my throat that I can’t swallow and can’t spit out.” Many say that this sensation is oppressive and preoccupying.
  3. The magnitude of the sensation tends to vary. Most often, it tends to become worse as the day progresses. A person might also notice that symptoms increase when they are stressed or fatigued, whatever the time of day.
  4. Active eating provides transient relief of the sensation. While the discomfort seems to originate in the swallowing passage, there is no interference with actual travel of food or drink.That is, the person’s ability to swallow food and liquids is fine. And in fact, during active eating,such as at lunch or dinner, the sensation subsides or even goes away completely, only to begin to return soon after finishing that meal.

Why does eating reduce the symptoms?

A person can’t rub the tight muscle directly, but each time a swallow happens, the sphincter muscle must let go momentarily, as already mentioned. This is then a kind of therapy to the over-contracted, hypertonic muscle. Swallowing saliva doesn’t help, because the volume we swallow is small, and the swallows are widely spaced in time. Active eating of a sandwich or plate of food during a mealtime, by contrast, relaxes the sphincter fully every 10 to 20 seconds across a span of 15 minutes or more. To repeat, this serves as a kind of unplanned “therapy” of the muscle and the symptoms subside for a time.

What can be done?

There is an old saying by Alexander Pope: “To know ourselves diseased is half our cure.” This seems to apply here as many patients say that simply coming to understand the disorder, as described above, is a major step towards relief. One woman said: “When I understood what was wrong, and that I didn’t have to worry about cancer, the problem started to gradually go away across the next several weeks.

For this to happen, however, the patient must accept and really believe in their diagnosis. Doctors can help them feel secure by making the diagnosis partially through what we call a “mind reading” exercise. It works like this: Right after the person says “Doctor, there is a lump…..”, we gently stop him or her, and ask if we can try to “read their mind.” The idea is that at the end of the “mind reading”, the patient is invited to say, “That’s it exactly!” Or, “That is mostly it but you said _________ and I would say __________.” Or, the patient might say “That isn’t at all what I am experiencing” and in this third case, attention is turned to a different diagnosis. If the physician does successfully “read the patient’s mind,” describing patient symptoms exactly, the patient finds it easier to accept and believe in the diagnosis because of the “mind-reading” involved.

Keep in mind that there really isn’t an examination finding, blood test, or X-ray to make the diagnosis for cricopharyngeus spasm. It is based in the precise 4-part syndrome described above.

Many such patients report that they can now “throw the sensation over their shoulders.” In other words, if particularly symptomatic, they can more easily say to themselves: “That crazy muscle….” It is a little like ignoring the sensation of new glasses, or contact lenses. And as mentioned, many say that knowing and trusting the diagnosis all by itself is the beginning of slow, steady, reduction and eventual disappearance of the symptoms across a few weeks’ time.

What if I want to do more than just “know myself diseased”? Isn’t there anything medical the doctor can do?

The occasional patient asks this and our list of further options includes:

  1. Work with a physical therapist or speech pathologist. The focus of that work is anterior neck relaxation, possibly by use of surface biofeedback electrodes, yawning maneuvers or very gentlestrap muscle massage (carefully avoiding going anywhere near the vascular compartments of theneck/ carotid arteries!!)
  2. A confirmatory “diagnostic” test in the form of a muscle relaxant, such as valium. That medication, called a benzodiazepine, has a tranquilizer effect, but we actually wish we could take it out of the medication. For our purposes, it is only the muscle relaxant property that we want. But they of course come together…. So here is how to do the diagnostic trial:
    1. We provide a prescription for four tablets of 5 mg each. These four tablets each represent a “diagnostic test.”
    2. Get into your pajamas about 2 hours before your normal bedtime on an evening whenyou are not planning to go out, and when you are also more than averagely symptomatic. Now take a moment to “commune” with your CPS sensation. “Measure” it on a 10-pointscale, for example. (Suppose you choose “6.”) Notify family that you are about to do your first diagnostic test of CPS. You can also set a loud timer for 90 minutes.
    3. Now, take Valium tablet #1.
    4. 90 minutes later, commune with/measure for a second time the level of the sensation. It is usually not gone altogether, but noticeably diminished. 25% to 75% reduction wouldbe what people commonly report. So on this particular evening, you might notice that“6” has become “2” or “3.” Again, this is the result of the direct muscle relaxant properties of Valium.
    5. If you fall asleep on the couch and waken in the middle of the night, you have three more opportunities to do the diagnostic test in coming days or weeks.
  3.  Rarely, a person can have the muscle injected with botulinum toxin. This is in the extreme casewhere the person isn’t worried about the diagnosis, but is simply plagued by the sensation itself. Of hundreds of persons we have diagnosed with this disorder, we have done this in a singlepatient, who achieved great benefit for the duration of botulinum toxin effect, approximately 4 months.

In summary, cricopharyngeus spasm occurs when hypertonicity in a circular, “valve” muscle mid- to low neck causes the sensation of a lump or choking, etc. It is a benign condition but especially while it remains undiagnosed, it can cause great distress and worry.

37 thoughts on “Cricopharyngeus Spasm and What to Do About It

  1. I have had a crycopharangel myotomy (pardon the spelling but I imagine you ccan figure it out) that did not help. Docttor said I had sensory neurogenic cough. When it hits it is brutal!! Anitriptilene? but didn’t work. Mine is complicated by a Zenker – deemed unoperable due to short neck and being too close to vocal folds and esophagus. Meanwhile the Zenker is growing and very often, I feel like there is something in my throat and will choke to death. The cough mostly hits when I am talking and sometimes when eating. I have heard so little about this affliction I was thrilled to read this article. Any further info, especially as regards to adding the Zenker would be appreciated.

  2. Dr Bastian, I hope you read this and I hope there is enough space here to share, almost two years ago I started getting this feeling that I had something in my throat and I was constricted, along with this I feel like I’m aspirating? (Taking Saliva Down my wind pipe) after about a month I finally went to my Dr to try and figure out what it is, First they gave me an Antibiotic, that didnt help, so they gave me a Steroid, that didnt help, I had a Sleep Apnea Test and was Diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea and was givin a C-Pap machine that I havent used because I need the full mask because I’m primarily a Mouth Breather and the Nose mask isnt gonna work for me, that being said I have Claustrophobia and just putting the nose mask on freaked me out, They sent me to an ENT Dr and I had an Endoscopy (Up my nose and down to my Vocal Chords) Nothing, I had a Swallow X-Ray test done with a Speech Pathologist, Nothing, I had a MRI done on my Brain to see if it was Parkinsons, Nothing, I had a Breathing Test which found I had great Lung Capacity, but no answer for the Constriction, or feeling like there is something in my throat, I went back to the ENT Dr and got another Endoscopy, Nothing, I had my Thyroid Checked with an Ultrasound, Nothing, I had another Swallow X-Ray test by the Speech Therapist, Nothing, I got a CT Scan of my Neck, Nothing, I went to a different ENT and had another Endoscopy, Nothing, I went to a G.I. Dr and he told me I had Post Nasal Drip, then he told me I had Acid Reflux, then he told me I had a Spasming Esophagus so he had me get an Upper G.I. and an Esophogram, then he scheduled me for an Endoscopy down my throat into my stomach in which he said I had eosinophilic esophagitis, he also said I had Esophagasm (Spasming Esophagus) he prescribed me Nitro Glycerin, that was way to hard to take, headaches, paranoia, suicidal effects UGH…., so he prescribed an alternative Nifedipine generic for Procardia, not as bad as the Nitro Glycerin but still hard to take, because he didnt seem to sure of any of these 5 things he diagnosed me with I went back to my Primary Care Dr and asked if I could see an Allergy Dr because the nature of the symptoms comes and goes like maybe I’m allergic to something, So I been seeing an allergist and he said I’m allergic to Tomatoes, Grass, Mold, Dust and prescribes allergy shots which I started a couple weeks ago, when I say comes and goes, I have good days and bad days, more bad then good, like 10 bad days, then 1 good day, some times when I’m doing physical things I seem to get a little reprieve, sleeping is difficult and I’m constantly trying to clear my throat and it is keeping my wife up at night.

    So with all that, I feel like nobody is getting it and they are just throwing things out there to see if something will stick, I been trying to read up on some many different things trying to figure out what it is I might have that has lead me down a trail of emptiness until I just stumbled on your video about Cricopharyngeus Spasm, is this also considered “Esophagasm”, if this is the case and you recommend Valium why did he give me Nitro Glycerin and Procardia, UGH!!!!!, I NEED HELP, my quality of life is disintegrating and when I got to bed at night I feel like I may not wake up in the morning because I’m going to choke and die, watching your video you seem to hit the nail on the head with my symptoms and the way I feel like I try to explain and nobody understands but you video nailed it, except that I feel like I’m taking saliva down my wind pipe and sometimes I do kind of choke because the muscles in my throat dont seem to be working properly.

    Can you please help me, I dont know where to turn next because it seems I have exhausted all help and nobody seems to understand my problem, except your video is making sense more then every Dr and Specialist and test Ive gone through, where do I start or go from here?

    Thanx for your time


  3. @Eric…very interesting that you have Eosinophilic Esophagitis.

    I also have EoE. I have also done many of the same diagnostic tests as well as tried many of the same medications, of which, all have come up short.

    EoE is known to cause globus aka Crichopharyngeal Spasm.

    My guess on this is the scarring from EoE causes some hyertonicity in the UES and/or we may be simply feeling the inflammation/scarring.

    I would talk to your doc about a double does of ppi, swallowed steroid (fluticasone or budenoside).

    Lastly, one drug I have heard other have success with is Singular. It works very differently from an antihistamine. Unfortunately, in the US it’s not available OTC.

    Good luck, and I hope we all one day figure this darned thing out. It really is life changing.

  4. My symptom,other than a tightness in my throat chiefly is a strong pressure in my ears via the eustachian tubes on a dry swallow.Have you had any patients with this symptom?My physicians are at a loss and have not made a diagnosis in over two years.The ear pressure has been a life changing symptom and I would greatly appreciate any advice on treating it.

  5. I have the throat issues as well as ear pressure. I constantly find myself popping my ears. I can manage the “spasms” by relaxing my shoulders for the most part, but still have them.

  6. I wish that I could find a way to manage the pulse of eustachion tube pressure when I swallow.If I have had a few glasses of wine it is a bit better.

  7. I have the lump in the throat feeling since March of this year. It started out as a heavy feeling on my chest so I went to see the cardio and he did an ECG, stress test and heart x-ray and all were normal. He referred me to the GI as the problem started when I had 2 pieces of KFC chicken so he thought that it was gastro-related. The GI doctor started me out with 40mg of Pantozol twice a day before meals. I also bought probiotic Enterogermina which helped for little while but it stopped working after a few days. They heavy pressure on my chest decreased but the lump on the throat persisted. He did endoscopy and found nothing but mild gastritis. On the discharge sheet though he mentioned on the clinic information GORD (or GERD) and dyspepsia. He told me to continue with the Pantozol and Enterogermina for another month. He said that the Pantozol takes at least a month for the symptoms to relieve. I will see him at the end of this month.

    Some of the other symptoms I have is I feel like there is something coming up to my neck then slowly goes back down. I burp constantly and I need to clear my throat frequently. Sometimes when the pressure is too much, my ear is affected (like you have water inside). I don’t have the usual heartburn symptoms of GERD so I don’t think it is acid reflux.

    Will update here when I see him next time.

  8. This article and the comments sound so much like what has been happening to me. I’m pretty confident I have cricopharyngeal spasms brought on by a combination of GERD and using advair

    In May, I had to take an antibiotic for an abscess tooth. Several doses into the the amoxicillin I had a bad reaction. My stomach felt very painful and my throat felt right. Ever since then I have had the globus sensation. At first it first like reflux coming up my throat (so much so I might be sick) then the throat sort of locks up. It caused me to feel very panicked the first time. I felt like I couldn’t even swallow my saliva.

    It got so bad that I felt I might throw up a couple of times. I even had to walk out of a party because of it. Ever since I have this fear that I might get the choking sensation in a public place and it’s made me almost agoraphobic. I hate this !!

    My GP believed it was caused by GERD so he put me on a PPI and prescribed a very low dose of Ativan to alleviate anxiety symptoms. The PPI has done not just nothing. The Ativan doesn’t get rid of the feeling. Either but makes me less anxious when I do feel it. I also had hoarseness at this time which he attributes to my inhaled steroid which I’ve since quit. It has improved some overall.

    It’s basically been 2.5 months of hell that is getting somewhat better.

    I’m going back to the GP to analyze this again. In my opinion, it’s CPS brought on by GERD, gastritis and voice strain. If anyone has any tips on how to manage these symptoms that would be wonderful

  9. I am experiencing something very similar actually. Three years ago during a stressful period of exams, I was walking to the hairdressers when I had a really odd tight, lumpy feeling in my throat. It was almost nauseating. About halfway there, I stopped in my tracks and ‘gagged’ (what I now believe to have been a spasm). Because I’ve always had a bit of a fear of being sick and I had no idea what had just happened (I assumed my body had tried to vomit) I was completely freaked out. I worried about it happening the next day, and it did. I worried so much about this odd reflex that it began to happen more and more frequently and like you, I pretty much became agoraphobic. I was too scared to eat in restaurants, meet up with friends etc. I was diagnosed with panic disorder and told I was just having panic attacks but the word ‘panic attack’ never really sat right with me. Sure, this weird reflex was making me pretty anxious but I never really experienced the typical symptoms of a panic attack.

    So three years have gone by and I’ve been desperately trying to figure out what the heck is happening to me. I came across a few articles about Cricopharyngeal spasms and pretty much had a eureka moment. Everything they described was what I’ve been experiencing all these years. It was like an insane breakthrough. I feel like all this time I’ve been having spasms misdiagnosed as panic attacks. A week before discovering this, I had gone to my doctor once again about the horrible feeling in my throat, for the first time, a doctor considered my symptoms to be something other than anxiety and she prescribed me a course of tablets for GERD. These have somewhat helped so I’m sure GERD is a contributing factor.

  10. Thank you so much for sharing this. I’m sorry you have been suffering this hell too. Your symptoms sound very, very similar to mine. I too have a strong aversion to throwing up (or seeing it) so I’ve pretty much diagnosed myself with emetophobia . I have never been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, but I’m fairly certain I meet a lot of the criteria for OCD (most emets also have OCD).

    I really doubt though, like you said, that this is all panic disorder. I have noticed that ativan helps manage the severity of the gagging/choking problem but that’s entirely consistent with the CPS diagnosis. Ativan and other benzos like valium relax muscles. CPS involves hypertonic muscles! What kind of treatment did they put you on for panic disorder once you had that diagnosis? Did it help at all?

    My new theory goes something like this–people like us who have GERD and possibly other aggravating factors like voice strain or even allergic esophagitis (eosinophilic variety) have strained throat/glossopharyngeal muscles. When we are under stress this situation is even worse given that tension/anxiety can create a feeling of tightness in the throat.

    Unfortunately for us, some perfect storm of crap leads to an episode of gagging or choking so severe it sets off our latent emetophobia. This in turn create a pattern of behavior that looks a heck of a lot like Generalized anxiety disorder but actually isn’t.

    I think both of us have a physical condition–cricopharyngeal spasms–brought about by other underlying physical causes like GERD. Our emetophobia is unfortunately sent into overdrive by constantly feeling a choking/gagging sensation. Our intense fear of vomiting in public has given us some agoraphobic like behaviors. The key, though, is that we don’t have generalized anxiety disorder as such and the treatment approach for that is likely not going to resolve our issues. Perhaps both of us might benefit from CBT targeted directly at emetophobia, though?

    I REALLY hope the GERD treatment helps you. I will continue to research and look for solutions and I will share them with you. Please stay in touch about your progress! I wish you the best!

  11. Please have your doctor check for esophageal Inlet patch. Doctors down play the importance of this finding. I had two and after every endoscopy they would make it seem negligible. Finally I had it ablated with barrx and it helped. Get those patches out. Don’t let the dr tell you that’s not what causing it.

  12. I have a question for the Dr. about my son’s situation. Can you please contact me or do I send through this site? My son is 20 and has been dealing with throat tightness where it has put a real damper on his enjoyment of life since this has been happening. Can the Dr please contact me with an email where I can email this information Please I really could use your help. Thanks you for your time regarding this matter

  13. Thanks Dr Bastian for this explanation. Its exactly how I’m feeling. Started about 2weeks ago and i thought it was my ulcer symptoms that is making me feel that way. I have taken lots of antacids but no changes, this article makes me feel better. But i would like to ask if there’s any medication or diets that can help.

  14. Sounds like what I have and began the day of an endoscopy…However, the muscles up the right half of my face (sometimes all) and ptosis upper right eyebrow/forehead are also affected as well as muscles back of skull. Although I have bone spur in neck and bulging cervical discs, Dr. sending me to PT. There are days Ii’m so depressed I can’t imaging living like this forever. It has absolutely changed my quality of life and feels so unfair.

    I also had a tummy tuck 10/19 and it exacerbated my GERD and brought on all kinds of other conditions with the increase in abdominal pressure. Just FYI to those considering.

  15. Sadly, not too much. I find that activan does help with it but it needs to be used really sparingly

    What kind of symptoms are you having? <hope you feel better soon

  16. I have had these same symptoms and was having really bad heartburn and swelling in the throat like something was inside and then came down with a sore throat.. but one like I have never experienced.. a few weeks later I started to have a burning sensation in the left side of my throat and “throat spasms”. I was a nervous wreck thinking it was everything that could kill me. I lost 10 pounds because I ate low fat and low carbs:. Hoping dieting would do the trick.. i still had these throat spasms… and still am experiencing them (however, less frequent) ..chewing gum sugar free (not peppermint) gum has helped a lot.. I hope that changing my unhealthy life style and losing some extra LBS will continue to show improvement in symptoms. I also like bio carbonate gum.

  17. It’s been a month since I have this problem with my throat,same feeling and sometimes it goes but sometimes it feels like someone strangulate me and I pray in the name of Jesus Christ that this evil spirit go away from my throat and all of us who is suffering from this and all the anxiety and depression to go away from us in Jesus name AMEN!!! By His wounds on the cross we are healed!!

  18. Monica—thank you so much. I pray the same. May God heal us all and help us to find meaning in this suffering

    God bless you,

  19. Today January 24 2021,I woke up healed Thank you Jesus! I prayed and repent for all my sins and ai gave all to God last night I asked Him to show me why the devil had a door opened to attack me,my throat? And God gave me an answer: because i did oral (things) with my husband and God don’t like and He’s against to this sin!
    But it can be so many things that we us humans don’t understand so many things but God can heal us if we come to Him sincerely! Thank you Jesus!! I’m normal again,my throat is normal and I can’t believe it

  20. Same. Started as pressure in the neck. I also get pressure in my ears. Now I will feel an almost flutter right at my adams apple. It feels sometimes difficult to swallow, even liquids, but when I do swallow there doesn’t feel like there’s a restriction. It definitely builds throughout the day, the more ido, the earlier it sets in. My pcp says it’s probably my MS. Like others here, I also have general anxiety, so this does not help. I have no answers for anyone, but it is somewhat a relief to have an idea what it might be. I’ve also read drinking warm fluids can help alleviate, so I’m going to try warm mint tea along with other suggestions and see.

  21. I seem to have developed the same issues as many of these symptoms. I felt thick phlegm trickling down my throat and a lump in my throat. Nothing found by the ENT or ultrasound. I seem to have managed most issues with physio therapy. Ever since it started I noticed that when I stretch out my neck muscles – the right side of my neck – the neck band is protruding on the affected side. My left side there’s nothing. Which is strange. I do sometimes have an uncomfortable feeling by my right ear / and jaw tightening. But it tends to go away after a while. I have suffered with chronic migraine for over 20 years. But no longer get those – thanks to Botox treatments.

    I hope that others can benefit from this.

    I’m not sure what EoE and all this is. But it certainly seems like what I have.

    EoE is known to cause globus aka Crichopharyngeal Spasm.

  22. I seem to have developed the same issues as many of these symptoms. I felt thick phlegm trickling down my throat and a lump in my throat. Nothing found by the ENT or ultrasound. I seem to have managed most issues with physio therapy. Ever since it started I noticed that when I stretch out my neck muscles – the right side of my neck – the neck band is protruding on the affected side. My left side there’s nothing. Which is strange. I do sometimes have an uncomfortable feeling by my right ear / and jaw tightening. But it tends to go away after a while. I have suffered with chronic migraine for over 20 years. But no longer get those – thanks to Botox treatments.

    I hope that others can benefit from this.

    I’m not sure what EoE and all this is. But it certainly seems like what I have.

    EoE is known to cause globus aka Crichopharyngeal Spasm.

  23. Hey there! I have been experiencing extreme pain that seems to be worsening for the last 5-6 years now, Im only 24 and dont have any medical issues. It seems I have experiencing what most people are above. I feel like I am being choked/strangled constantly, my neck feels numb, I get really bad anxiety to the point where I dont sleep or have to go to the ER, I have experienced the ear pain as well. For me specifically, it feels like the pain travels, I feel it in my lower back and my abdomen area sometimes too. I am not sure if the pain makes me feel it in other places or what. I have been to my PCP who has done a variety of tests including: x-rays, ultrasounds, CT, and MRI. My PCP told me it was GERD, but I dont believe that is all of it because the pain is still there after medicating. I have seen an ENT, a Gastroenterologist, and am now seeing a Neurologist. This pain is constant and continues to get worse, it feels debilitating and I can even enjoy anything anymore. It makes me want to sit in bed all day and it has now made me depressed because of the constant feeling of pain. If anyone has any advice on what to do please reach out to me. Thanks.

  24. i just suddenly feel my throat closing i cant breathe its a terrifying sensation and last for at least a minute you think that you will never get another breath this happens quite regularly what can i do to stop this

  25. Hello my name is Stevan. dec 23 I had an allergic reaction which caused me to vomit violently and damaged my esophagus. I also had a lump in my throat since then and no doctors been helping me with the lump. The GI did an endoscopy 2 months later smh and said I got diverticulum of esophagus and stomach ulcers and prescribed me protonix. Mind u I went to a unity hospital Jan 14th and explained the same symptoms and they prescribed me the same thing. And my lump never went away it’s feb 23 which makes it two whole months with this problem and no help. Hopefully when I see the ent doctor Thursday they can see my cpm muscle being super contracted and can tell me whether it’s a spasm or a dysfunction but regardless I kno I need surgery for my diverticulum but they say it’s small so I don’t need it but I feel it when I swallow which I never felt before I had an allergic reaction. I’m praying they give me surgery for my diverticulum by stapling it closed and cut my Cricopharyngeus muscle so it don’t contract anymore. Pray for me guys please. I make music and I just want to be back normal so I can feed my family and help my friends in my hood.

  26. I really hope you are still monitoring this site for questions and comments. I came across this site trying to figure out what is happening to me. The above listed sensations are very similar but diverge in intensity. My spasms start at the base of my throat/hollow of neck down to the top of my stomach BUT the sensation is much more intense like I am trying to swallow razors or being stabbed through the hollow of my neck. The pain is SO intense that it leaves me gasping for breath which exasperates the sensation. The only thing I can do to help alleviate the pain is to swallow liquid. The spasms vary in duration of time and then I am left with a dull ache for a while longer. I have been diagnosed with thyroid tumors and GERD. While the tumors are growing they are growing very slowly and are “just” to small for removal as well as being wrapped around my vocal cords. I do not have all the medical jargon for all of this. Is there anything I can ask my Dr. to do as these spasm are seeming to happen more frequently. They started about 12 years ago and I usually was only having a spasm every six months but now it’s more like once a month.

  27. My spasm started when I had an accident and broke my arm. I worried about having to go to hospital for an operation and three days later got the neck spasm. It feels like a deep swallow that i am not responsible for. It always happens when I am relaxing to go to sleep. It does not allow me to sleep. The only thing that has help are sleeping tablets. I then don’t notice it. Does anyone else have this

  28. I have just run across this video and information while searching for “feels like someone’s hands are around my throat”. I went to my family doctor several months ago, with feeling of an elephant on my chest. I went to the cardiologist and had heart cat but no blockages. He said go the gastro and I have and had upper and lower GI and tube run down my esophagus. Afterward he said I had a hiatel hernia, and scarring of the esophaguas. Couple of weeks have passed, I’m miserable, constantly feel like I’m about to have a stroke or heart attack, ear pressure, numbness of face, pressure all around neck and throat. I too have had GERD (constant belching and the need to constantly belch). My family doc put me on Dexilent; it worked wonders on the GERD and several years later switched me to propantazol (misspelled). I’m a very anxious person and don’t handle stress as well as I used to which increases the anxiety. My followup with the gastro is this week. I’m not sure I can live with this much longer. This comes after a year of recovering from breaking my back, giving in from active to sedentary lifestyle, and with this throat and pressure business I can barely walk across the room without shortness of breath. The cricophargeal spasm description comes closest to how I feel. Oddly, I get relief when I do lay down, but if I sit up or get up and walk, it’s there. I’m glad I ran across this; I’ve written down these long words to relay to the doctor. I wnat an answer and I want relief and I want my life back.

  29. My husband and I watched your video on this and laughed out loud because it sounded like it was made for me. After 3 years of tests and dead ends, I am SURE this is what I have.
    Two things that stood out… I feel better after eating, and it’s better when I wake up in the morning.
    I’m worse when sitting (posture???) and better when moving around and active.

    Wondering… does alcohol relax the UES the same way it does for the LES? Only asking because I usually get temporary relief after a cocktail.

    Since I’ve been dealing with this for so long, I probably need the Level 4 treatment. My doctor wants me to take a tricyclic antidepressant, but the side-effects have been intolerable so far. Any chance you can tell me what prescriptions have been successfully used in the past?

  30. I started experiencing acid reflex 3 years ago
    and a year later a constant cricopharyngeal
    spasms and more recently pain in nasopharyngeal
    area. After seeing a functional doctor he ran
    a mycotoxin test that came back positive for 3
    types of toxins after I told him I lived in a water
    damaged building for 6 years. I saw many doctors
    and some suggested my symptoms were all in my
    head. I’m trying to find someone who takes my
    insurance for continued treatment because I cannot
    afford out of pocket expenses.

  31. I have this feeling of an obstruction in my throat and feel as though I have excess phlegm and have to keep making short coughs, but more worryingly there are times when all of a sudden I cannot breathe, literally cannot catch a breath. I have watched your video on Laryngosoasm and this seems to be what is happening. Is it possible to have both conditions?

  32. I have this feeling of an obstruction in my throat and feel as though I have excess phlegm and have to keep making short coughs, but more worryingly there are times when all of a sudden I cannot breathe, literally cannot catch a breath. I have watched your video on Laryngospasm and this seems to be what is happening. Is it possible to have both conditions?

  33. Hi Monica,
    Please reply if you are still looking at this. I would like to know if you have now been completely healed in JESUS name.

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