Lymphoma: what is it, symptoms, photos
It is known that it is not always tumors are malignant. Sometimes they do not transform and remain stable, requiring supervision by a medical oncologist. But in some cases the situation gets out of control, and then develops a serious oncological disease. It is to such «mysterious» diseases refers lymphoma. What is it, and what is its danger?
Lymphoma is a type of hematological malignancies. This regional neoplastic disease of lymphatic tissue. «Regional» means that the tumor initially affects any of the departments of the lymphatic system. If once the disease affects the bone marrow, it is called leukemia («cancer of blood»). And lymphoma the bone marrow may remain unharmed, and only in the terminal stage, if the tumor has started to metastasize (this may not happen), it may be secondary, metastatic leukemia.
Lymphoma – a «cluster» disease
Interestingly, lymphoma is called not one, but a whole group of diseases. When they have common symptoms – the defeat of the regional lymph nodes and various internal organs. The main «workers» in this defective lymphatic tissue are tumor cells. It is their reproduction, which happens without control, and the cause of the growth of these formations. In humans, there are several groups of regional lymph nodes: inguinal, suboccipital, axillary, submandibular, and others. In each of these groups may occur in lymphoma, the symptoms which at first are just swollen lymph nodes.
What are lymphomas?
Patients often ask, «lymphoma – cancer or not»? What they mean by this can be a quick fatal lymphoma? At this point, even in malignant forms of the doctors to prolong the lives of patients by 10 to 20 years. Given the fact that this disease has the two most frequent «peak» incidence in young and older adults, it turns out that if a person fell ill in 55 – 60 years, malignant lymphoma, he has all the chances to live to old age. But there is a benign form of the disease, which does not lead to dissemination. What types of these diseases are known?
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Hodgkin disease, or Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The name of this named after the English physician T. Hodgkin, who described several cases of this disease almost two years ago. This disease can be attributed to the true lymphomas since the beginning of full of health growth of one group of lymphocytes gradually leads to the defeat of many groups and internal organs. Defective neoplastic lymphocytes, which are determined from the beginning of the disease with biopsy, are proof of confirmation of the diagnosis.
The signs of Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a painless enlarged nodes. Often the first symptoms are a feeling of squeezing in the chest and difficulty breathing, as affects the intrathoracic lymph nodes. In this case, the patient revealed lymphoma of the mediastinum.
Then, the number involved in the formation of defective lymphocyte tissue increases. The frequent lethal outcome of this disease is often caused by viral and bacterial infections, because the defective lymphocytes are not able to fulfil its protective function. The main distinguishing feature of this type of tumor is a good prediction of the distribution, with no surprises, and also a good otkliknoi for treatment.
In addition to Hodgkin’s lymphoma, there is a large group of other tumors, which differ according to the type formed of cells, the degree of malignancy, and other morphological characteristics. One of the most malignant forms of disease is Burkitt lymphoma, which is often a marker of HIV infection in advanced stage. In addition, it can develop after suffering mononucleosis, as it has a viral nature. It is caused by a virus Epstein-Barr. Fortunately, it is not found in Russia.
High malignity lymphoblastic lymphoma is different. It is quite rare, but causes significant disruption of internal organs, because, starting in the lymph nodes, then there is lymphoma in the mediastinum, and in large volume. It can affect the bone marrow, causing secondary leukemia. Despite this, lymphoma can be very sensitive to therapy, and possible long-term clinical remission. Below are the typical drug cell lymphoblastic lymphoma.
No one klassificeret lymphoma the location: the technician will not say anything, the words «lymphoma of the skin» or «lymphoma of lung». Diagnosis of their proceeds on quite different principles.
Lymphomas in children
All variants of these tumors in children occur in the adverse scenario, as they have a high degree of malignancy and rapid growth. They spread to the mediastinum, the pleura and the lining of the brain. So at the slightest changes in the health of the child, parents need to examine it carefully on the subject of enlarged lymph nodes, which in some cases can be manipulated independently.
The main thing that should remember everyone: if you find yourself painless, enlarged, dense lymph node, and adjacent (symmetric) side this not, immediately contact your doctor. It is better to the oncologist. If the biopsy is normal, it is always possible to be treated in infectious diseases or the surgeon.
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For lymphomas can have «oddities» that are able to recognize only experienced and extensively educated physician. For example, in lymphoblastic lymphoma, the blood tests showed increased C-reactive protein, which is most often found in inflammatory lesions of the connective tissue, the infectious processes and rheumatism. Many doctors start to prescribe without the testimony of numerous antibiotics, therefore losing precious weeks and sometimes months. Other symptoms of the disease are:
- low-grade fever without a reason;
- fatigue, loss of function;
- the chills, which can disturb in the warm season;
- weight loss;
- one of the signs of lymphoma can be itchy – both General and localized over a group of lymph nodes.
Of course, standard diagnostics must include the General and biochemical blood tests, MRI of the chest cavity (the mediastinal lymph nodes), ultrasound of lymph nodes, identification of special biochemical markers, and if necessary, performing bone marrow puncture.
Treatment of all types of lymphoma – mixed: applied radiation therapy and chemotherapy. If the tumor causes compression of the neurovascular bundles and vital organs, possible palliative operation. As a rule, many forms of tumors, even high grade malignancy respond well to treatment.