Lymphoma is a quite common illness, which in 2019, impacted more than 82,000 Americans. Overall, northward of 874,000 people are currently living with some form of the disease. Lymphoma is a scientific term used to describe malignancies that originate in the lymphatic system. Lymphatic cells and tissues are an integral component of the body's immune system.
There are two major types of lymphoma, Hodgkin's lymphoma, and the non-Hodgkin's differentiation. The primary discrepancy between the two illnesses is the specific type of lymphatic cells, known in medical terms as lymphocytes, involved. Individuals stricken with the Hodgkin's variety experience the presence of what are classified as Reed-Sternberg cells, while these cells are not seen in the ailment's other manifestation.
Those cell involvement is the primary difference, there are other notable characteristics between the two categories. The non-Hodgkin's variety is more common, typically diagnosed at a later age, often begins anywhere inside the body and is often diagnosed at a later stage.
In most cases, researchers cannot pinpoint one specific underlying cause. That said, these medical professionals opine that individuals might be at an increased risk of contracting these malignancies if they are male, have a compromised immune system, have been previously infected with viruses like Epstein Barr, were exposed to elevated radiation levels, have a family history of the disease or were exposed to chemicals like benzene or weed certain weed killing preparations.
Symptoms can vary depending upon the type and stage of the illness. However, common physical manifestations include:
- swollen, lumpy or painful lymph nodes, especially those in the head, neck, chest and armpits
- elevated body temperatures
- frequent bleeding or bodily bruising
Physicians might employ several diagnostic tests to confirm a lymphoma diagnosis. The presence of enlarged lymph nodes found during routine physical examinations or testing for other ailments might precipitate actions like lymph node biopsies, the extraction and examination of bone marrow, various blood tests and imaging tools, such as computerized tomography, CT scans, magnetic resonance imaging, MRI or position emission tomography, PET scans.
Potential Treatment Options
The specific therapeutic protocol employed by a healthcare professional will depend upon several factors, including the patient's age, overall health, the specific type of lymphoma diagnosed, the stage said diagnosis occurred and how quickly the illness is progressing. That said, numerous forms of treatment might be used, such as:
A combination of drugs are administered to kill abnormal lymphatic cells. In most instances, said therapy is administered intravenously but may also be given in pill form.
High-powered dosages of X-rays are used to target cancer cells.
Bone Marrow Transplants
Transplantation of bone marrow from a suitable donor is injected into the blood, makes its way to the bones, overtakes the diseased marrow and regenerates healthy tissues.
Physicians engineer certain immune system cells to fight cancer cells.
Prospective outcomes will depend upon the type of lymphoma differentiation, the impacted patient's age, the stage in which said condition is diagnosed, and if any other potential complications exist. However, medical professionals maintain that the survival rate is better with Hodgkin's lymphoma because said malady is typically diagnosed at an earlier stage than the non-Hodgkin's variety.
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