ZocdocAnswersMy wife is having difficulty swallowing. What can she do?

Question

My wife is having difficulty swallowing. What can she do?

She ate an orange and feels like it's stuck halfway down her esophagus. She's tried bread, tea and olive oil.

Answer

Sorry to hear about this problem. If she is still suffering from her symptoms, I would suggest that she speak with her doctor. Foreign bodies can often become lodged in the upper airway or the aerodigestive tract. These can be emergencies if they are blocking the airway, but the tone of your email suggests that this is not causes changes in her voice or breathing. If it is, please go straight to an emergency room or call 911. If she merely has the sensation that there is something in her throat and swallowing is more difficult (doctors call this a globus sensation in some situations), then she should speak with her doctor about the next step, or go to an emergency room. There are times that further testing is needed to make sure that there is not something still lodged in her throat or esophagus. Sometimes, a simple scope examination at the bedside is sufficient. Other times may require imaging or even a trip to an endoscopy suite vs the operating room. This will depend on what your doctor sees and hears in speaking with your wife. Best of luck with her, but please speak with your doctor soon about your problem.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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