Lymphoma occurs when lymphocytes in the lymph gland begin to multiply uncontrollably, creating numerous deformed lymphocytes due to which the gland is swollen.
This wound, cancerous tissue, is a form of malignant tumor called lymphoma. Lymphocytes are moving cells, and cancerous lymphocytes are commonly spread to the spleen and lymph glands in other parts of the body, creating new tumors in these organs.
The first symptom is usually a gastric gland in the neck (the most common place), or under the armpits or in the groin. Occasionally, several glands simultaneously swell. If the spleen is affected, in the upper abdomen of the abdominal cavity a feeling of “fullness” or tightness may appear. Other symptoms include the feeling of general illness, loss of appetite and weight loss, elevated temperature, night sweats, skin itching and sensitivity to infections because deformed lymphocytes can not protect the body from infection.
Lymphomas are rare. They are affecting only one person out of 10,000 people. They usually occur in middle age, and men suffer twice as often as women.
All types of lymphoma end up with death if they are not treated. Slow-growing tumors are generally difficult to cure, but because they grow slowly, people can live a pretty normal life for years. Tumors that grow fast and develop in a few weeks usually react well to therapy, and some of them are curable.
What to do?
If your glands or other parts of the body are swollen and that condition, without obvious reasons, lasts longer than two weeks, contact your doctor. Your doctor will take your blood sample and send you to a gland examination at a hospital where it will probably be removed. Blood and glandular tissue tests will be needed for accurate diagnosis.
If a diagnosis of this disease is set, its scope will be determined by additional examinations in the hospital, such as x-rays and lymphangiogram.
If the affected glands are in one part of the body only, treatment can only be performed by radiotherapy. If the disease is spread, corticosteroids and cytostatics (novel or cancer drugs) are given. Treatment usually consists of administering a combination of medications, and the patients needs to be in the for a short time. Curative treatment is repeated at intervals of several weeks.
If the disease develops quickly, it can be cured. If the tumors grow slowly or if the treatment stops but does not cure the disease, the symptoms will eventually reappear and the patient will receive another medication. However, after some time the disease will stop responding to treatment, the patient will become less resistant to infections, and one of those will eventually cause death.