Hodgkins Lymphoma

Hodgkins lymphoma refers to a type of cancer affectecting the immune system’s cells especially the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system consists of lymph vessels, lymph (fluid containing white blood cells, mostly T cells and B cells), lymph nodes, spleen, tonsils and thymus. Hodgkins lymphoma develops when lymphocyte especially B cell grow to be abnormal cells known as Reed-Sternberg cell. Reed-Sternberg cell then segregate to form new cells, which divides further forming more abnormal cells which have a prolonged life span. This division leads to accumulation of excess cells forming a mass of tissue known as tumor or growth.

Symptoms Of Hodgkins Lymphoma

Patients suffering from Hodgkin’s lymphoma may experience the following signs and symptoms:

i. Lymph nodes: lymph nodes, especially the ones located on the neck become enlarged thereby appearing, rubbery and swollen.
ii. Itchy skin
iii. Night sweats
iv. Unexplained weight loss
V . Splenomegaly: this refers to the enlargement of spleen.
vi. Hepatomegaly: this refers to process by which liver becomes enlarged.
vii. Hepatosplenomegaly: here, both the spleen and the liver becomes enlarged.
viii. Back pain
ix. Systemic symptoms such as: low-grade fever, pruritus, fatigue
X . Difficulty in breathing, coughing and chest pains
xi. Increased sensitivity due to alcohol consumption
xii. Loss of appetite

Hodgkins Lymphoma Treatment Options

According to the medical research, the appropriate treatment option for hodgkins lymphoma depends on the stage and the type f disease. These treatments mainly focus bringing the syndrome into remission through destruction of numerous tumor cells as possible. They include:

a) Chemotherapy: this form of treatment makes use of a series of chemical compounds and drugs to cause shrinking of the lymphoma tumor cells. However, chemotherapy is highly recommended at the early stages of this disease. Chemotherapy is mostly used together with radiation therapy, especially during the early stage; however, at later stage it can be used alone. Chemotherapy drugs occur in different, i.e. pills that are orally administered or injections via a vein in the arm. Chemotherapy side effects vary based on the type of drugs used, however, the common one are loss of hair and nausea.

b) Radiation: this is a type of therapy that makes use of high-energy beams, e.g. X-rays to destroy tumors. During the treatment, these high-energy beams are directed against the tumor cells and the surrounding areas to prevent spreading of the disease. The length of this treatment depends on the stage of Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Radiation side effects include: loss of hair and skin redness in the area where treatment is aimed and fatigue.

c) Stem-cell transplant: stem-cell transplant is aimed at replacing the diseased bone marrow with other health stem cells to promote growth of new bone marrow. This is mostly preferred especially if Hodgkin’s lymphoma keeps on recurring despite treatment. Here, it involves removal of the patient`s blood stem cells which are then frozen and stored for afterward use. Next, cancer cells are destroyed using high-dose radiation therapy and chemotherapy, after which the good stem cells are injected into the body via veins thereby allowing the development of healthy bone marrow.

d) Other treatment options for hodgkins lymphoma include: immunotherapy and use of medications such as Adriamycin PFS, Ambochlorin, Bleomycin and many more.

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