Lymphoma is a cancer that begins in the germ-fighting cells of the immune system. It can affect the lymph nodes, spleen, thymus and bone marrow. Because lymphoma is carried through the blood, cancer can easily spread (metastasize) to different parts of the body as well. Lymphoma is the most common blood cancer diagnosed in adults and one of the most common cancers overall in the United States.
Lymphoma can be divided into two categories: non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The main difference between the two cancers is that Hodgkin’s lymphoma involves a very specific type of abnormal cells called Reed-Sternberg cells. These cells often have more than one nucleus and multiply as the disease advances. Fortunately, non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) accounts for approximately 85 percent of lymphoma cases and is highly treatable—often curable. Signs and symptoms of lymphoma
Signs and symptoms of lymphoma may include:
- Painless swelling of the lymph nodes in your neck, armpits or groin
- Persistent fatigue
- Night sweats
- Shortness of breath
- Unexplained weight loss
What are the risk factors of lymphoma?
Because the exact cause of lymphoma is unknown, the majority of cases cannot be prevented. However, there are common risk factors that may be associated with a higher risk of lymphoma, they include:
- Age – Most cases of lymphoma occur between ages 15 and 40, and peaks again after age 55
- Environmental factors – Exposure to environmental poisons like agricultural pesticides can increase your overall risk
- Gender – Lymphoma is more common in males than females
- Infection – People with a weakened immune system, including infection with HIV, have an increased risk
If you or a loved one is in need of skilled lymphoma treatment in Texas, contact HOPE Cancer Center of East Texas at 903-617-5293. Our physicians are recognized as leaders in cancer care in East Texas. They combine advanced expertise and capabilities—often only found at large cancer centers in metropolitan areas—with an unsurpassed commitment to helping you or your loved one win the fight against cancer.