Lymphoma is a type of cancer that develops in the body and within its own organs or within the lymphatic system, itself. The lymphatic system is responsible for carrying white blood cells and other types of fluids throughout the body. Its purpose is to fight viruses, infections and other bacteria through filtration in an attempt to keep the body healthy. Unfortunately, when its cells continually grow and become out of control, solid tumors can develop and grow. Because the lymphatic system naturally spreads throughout most of the body to serve it functions, this allows the cancer tumors to be found in such organs as the stomach and liver, to name only a few. They can also be found in the blood stream, but not often. A person who develops Lymphoma can have Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma or Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Hodgkin’s Lymphoma has cancer cells that behave differently than Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. These cells are more uniform acting in that they will go from one area of lymph nodes to the next. Most cancers within the lymphatic system are classified as Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
Lymphoma Symptoms Information:
The symptoms of Lymphoma can vary. One of the most obvious symptoms is having lumps in such areas as the abdomen and under the arms or having swollen glands in the neck. The lumps are not painful. The swollen glands are really swollen lymph nodes. Do not get these confused with regular fat cells that can regularly occur on one’s arms, thighs and legs. Other symptoms include vomiting, without having the flu, abdominal pain, not breathing very good or coughing, without having a cold or virus. Also, red patches can occur on the outer skin. Still, there have been reports of other symptoms called ‘B’ systems. These symptoms include a person feeling very tired all the time, with no apparent reason and an increase and fluctuation in body temperature. The fluctuation mostly occurs in the evening or at night. Other “B’ symptoms include skin itching for no allergic reason, night sweats and noticeable weight loss for no apparent reason. However, just because a person has some of these symptoms, does not mean they have Lymphoma. There could be many other causes. If the symptoms continue for several weeks or more, it would probably be a good idea to seek medical care.
Lymphoma Treatment Information:
Surgery is usually sought to remove the original cancer tumors. With the fear that they might have unknowingly spread, other treatments such as chemotherapy, with or without radiation may be viable for Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma patients. Or, just the chemotherapy and radiation might be used without surgery, depending on the type of tumors and where they are located within the body. With the use of chemotherapy, several different kinds of toxic drugs are usually administered to kill the cancer tumors. It is a systemic treatment in that the drugs affect the entire body and can kill tumors that have not been found. Radiation can also be used in conjunction with the chemotherapy. These high-energy x-rays also kill cancer tumors and can shrink them. One type of chemotherapy uses such high doses of drugs, that they kill the bone marrow. A person can have his or her bone marrow taken before the chemotherapy starts and the bone marrow can be transplanted back in once the therapy has ended or a donor can be used. There are now innovative biological treatments being developed. These types of treatments uses a person’s own chemicals that are made from his or her body to jump start that person’s own defense mechanism to fight the cancer. These are in the early and experimental stages.