What is Lymphoma? Gain insight to ace the fight against Lymphoma!

Whether someone has recently received a diagnosis or completed treatment, lymphoma changes many aspects of their life. The first stepping stone is acceptance of the diagnosis. And once the reality of lymphoma diagnosis settles in, preparing for the new changes is the next important step in the fight against lymphoma.

While putting up a brave front against lymphoma, many patients have questions about handling new challenges. Therefore, it is beneficial to gain as much knowledge about lymphoma as possible.  Having a better understanding makes one feel more in control. Let’s gain insight into the various facts about lymphoma.

What is lymphoma?

A type of Blood cancer that affects lymphocytes or cells in your body’s immune system is lymphoma. When a person has lymphoma, their lymphocytes change and multiply abnormally. These cells can move to various locations in the body like, gathering in tiny lymph nodes that are bean-shaped organs, resulting in the enlargement of lymph nodes.

There are different types of lymphoma. While some types advance very slowly, others progress at an increased pace. In some cases, lymphomas that initially grow slowly can quickly progress in the later stage.

What are the symptoms of lymphoma?

The symptoms of lymphoma are as follows:

  • The earliest symptoms of lymphoma may include one or more enlarged swollen lymph nodes. They usually occur in the stomach, groin, armpit, or neck.
  • Although you can feel the nodes beneath the skin, these enlarged lymph nodes are typically painless.
  • Deeper lymph nodes in the body might swell and produce symptoms as well. For instance, enlarged lymph nodes near the lungs lead to coughing or breathing difficulties.
  • Additional signs of lymphoma include: Fever, Loss of weight, and Sweats at night that soak your clothes

You should inform your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms.

Is there a lymphoma test?

Yes. During the examination, your doctor or nurse will ask a few questions about your symptoms. They might recommend more tests, such as:

Lymph node biopsy

As part of a lymph node biopsy, the doctor takes out one of the enlarged lymph nodes to determine whether the lymphoma is present.

Bone marrow biopsy

Using a needle, the doctor removes a small sample of the spongy tissue from the core of the bone and analyzes it under a microscope to detect lymphoma.

Imaging tests

CT scans, PET scans, and other imaging tests can indicate abnormal growth by taking photographs of the inside of your body.

What is lymphoma staging?

Doctors use lymphoma staging to determine the spread of cancer cells throughout the body. The kind of lymphoma you have, your age, and any other health problems play a role in determining the best course of treatment.

How is lymphoma treated?

Doctors use a variety of methods to treat patients with lymphoma.

Some patients with lymphoma require immediate treatment. Meanwhile, treatment is not initially necessary for those whose lymphoma progresses slowly without showing any symptoms.

Treatments for lymphoma often include one or more of the following:

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is the term used in medicine to describe drugs that slow down the growth of cancer cells.

Immunotherapy  

During immunotherapy, drugs destroy cancer cells.

Radiation therapy

This treatment option utilizes radiation to eliminate cancer cells.

Bone marrow transplant

Bone marrow transplants replace the abnormal cells in the bone marrow with normal cells, and the abnormal cells are then killed by chemotherapy or radiation

What happens after the completion of treatment?

You will be monitored periodically after therapy to see if the lymphoma reappears.

  • Your doctor may occasionally order imaging or blood tests as well. Always communicate your opinions about post-treatment challenges to your doctors and nurses.
  • Side effects from lymphoma treatment are possible. Discuss how to treat any symptoms you may be experiencing with your doctor.
  • Consult your doctor regarding any dietary or activity modifications to improve your health after receiving treatment.
  • To cope with the pain, you can also seek innovative approaches like enrolling in meditation sessions or practicing guided imagery to visualize peaceful scenarios.
  • If lymphoma recurs, you may need additional sessions of chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation, or a bone marrow transplant if the lymphoma recurs.

All in all, reclaiming your life from lymphoma may be difficult, but it is not impossible. Initially, you may feel like you have no control over anything after receiving a lymphoma diagnosis. You may wonder if you can continue your daily routine and do things you enjoy. And the first step in the direction of good health involves cultivating a better understanding of lymphoma, monitoring your symptoms, and seeking timely medical assistance.

If you experience any symptoms related to lymphoma, don’t delay consulting a medical oncologist or hematologist. Receiving the proper medical treatment and care is the only way to steer clear of any related medical complications.

To book an appointment with a medical oncologist, contact us at +91-9540 114 114.

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SSB Heart and Multispecialty Hospital