Lymphoma as it is defined by the National Cancer Institute – Cancer that begins in cells of the immune system. There are two basic categories of lymphomas. One kind is Hodgkin lymphoma, which is marked by the presence of a type of cell called the Reed-Sternberg cell. The other category is non-Hodgkin lymphomas, which includes a large, diverse group of cancers of immune system cells. Non-Hodgkin lymphomas can be further divided into cancers that have an indolent (slow-growing) course and those that have an aggressive (fast-growing) course. These subtypes behave and respond to treatment differently. Both Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphomas can occur in children and adults, and prognosis and treatment depend on the stage and the type of cancer.
Statistics from the National Cancer Institute
- It is estimated that 8,220 men and women (4,400 men and 3,820 women) will be diagnosed with and 1,350 men and women will die of Hodgkin lymphoma in 2008
- Survival percentage for men or women diagnosed before the age of 45 is 91.6%
Symptoms that can help with early detection (the ones in red are the symptoms I have experienced).
- Swollen lymph nodes (that do not hurt) in the neck, underarms, or groin
- Becoming more sensitive to the effects of alcohol or having painful lymph nodes after drinking alcohol
- Weight loss for no known reason (I lost 30 pounds)
- Fever that does not go away
- Soaking night sweats
- Itchy skin
- Coughing, trouble breathing, or chest pain
- Weakness and tiredness that don’t go away