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Description of Lymphoma


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The first notice as painless enlarged lymph nodes (adenopathy or lymphadenopathy) is lymphoma. Generally enlarged lymph nodes do not mean lymphoma. The diagnosis of lymphoma can be determined or excluded by a biopsy and subsequent pathology evaluations of the tissue.

Depending on the type of lymphoma and where the lymphoma is actively growing symptoms can vary. Symptoms like anemia (low red blood cells count) the bone marrow dysfunction are not so common but are present in later stages of the disease and also as side effect of some treatments. MALT lymphomas may present as an upset stomach or an enlarged lymph node can cause a change in bowel movement.

It can be difficult to identify the meaning of a symptom because some of these may be common to certain stages of lymphoma and to specific treatments. Other medical conditions and illnesses that are unrelated to lymphoma like flu or an ulcer can be developed. There are other informations that doctor must know when he is informed about a symptom like: the intensity, the size and appearance, when it started, how long it has lasted, if it waxes and wanes, the medications and supplements used and the beginning of uses them, how the symptom might change when position is changed, association of the symptom with meals or specific foods, the time of day the symptom might be most intense.

These and other details help the doctor to identify the possible cause or causes, or if further tests are warranted. The common symptoms that appear are unexplained and persistent: anemia, appetite loss, fatigue, fever, flu-like symptoms - aches, fever, chills, infections associated with low white count, night sweats - drenching, pain; itchy skin (purititis), red patches; jaundice - yellowish tinge (related to liver function), swollen and painless lymph nodes, swollen spleen or liver, thrombocytopenia and weight loss.

B-symptoms are common and a onset of them may suggest that the lymphoma is progressing. Also b-symptoms present unexplained and persistent: fever and chills, drenching night sweats, fatigue, pruritus and weight loss. Other symptoms are flu-like symptoms like aches and pains, localized pain that may occur depending on the location of tumors, and frequent infections resulting from depressed immunity.

The diagnosis of lymphoma (which requires a biopsy) is often delayed because b-symptoms are common to both minor and serious medical conditions. Fever, night sweats, weight loss in excess of 10%, or asthenia, called systemic symptoms are infrequent at presentation of the disease but can be observed in later stages. If a patient develops systemic symptoms the progression to an intermediate-grade or high-grade lymphoma should be considered. To monitor progression monitoring blood for increasing levels of LDH and Human beta-2 microglobulin is used.

If a person present some of these symptoms a doctor should be consult for a proper treatment.

For more resources about lymphoma or even about non hodgkins lymphoma please review this page


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