Understanding Hodgkin's Lymphoma

Hodgkin’s lymphoma, also more commonly known as Hodgkin’s disease, is a type of lymphoma or cancer of the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a series or system of nodes connected by vessels that functions to drain fluid and waste products from the organs found in the body. The lymph nodes act as tiny filters that try to strain out unwanted organisms as well as cancerous cells.

Hodgkin’s lymphoma is characterized by the spread of the disease from one lymph node group to another. Lymphoma occurs when the lymphocytes, cells in the lymph nodes, start to multiply uncontrollably. In the process, the cells begin to produce malignant cells that can abnormally invade other cells and tissues in the body.

Causes of hodgkin disease

The actual cause of Hodgkin’s disease still remains unknown. But scientists and researchers have discovered certain links as to how the disease may develop in some people. One of those links is that people who may have experienced glandular fever caused by an Epstein-Barr virus infection have greater chances also of developing Hodgkin’s disease.

People who suffer from congenital immune deficiency problems may also have a higher risk of developing the disease. Even people who may have undertaken treatment using immunosuppressant drugs may also have a higher likelihood of developing Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Symptoms of hodgkin disease

One of the most common symptoms associated with Hodgkin’s lymphoma is the painless enlargement of one or more lymph nodes in the body. Most notable of the swellings are those in lymph nodes located in the neck and shoulder areas. The lymph nodes in the chest may also show swelling in some cases.

Another symptom associated with Hodgkin’s disease is the enlargement of the spleen or the liver. Some patients may experience back pain that can’t seem to be localized in any area of the back. Others may also experience systemic symptoms such as low fever, night sweats as well as unexplained weight loss.

Treatment of hodgkin disease

Effective treatment for Hodgkin’s disease includes the use of radiation therapy and chemotherapy, or both. The choice of treatment usually varies and based on a patient’s age, gender, and the type of disease. The disease is considered to be highly curable and timely treatment can ensure a good survival rate for patients.