Lymphoma is an umbrella term for various types of lymphatic cancers. Lymphoma is basically a collection of cancer cell tumors that start in the immune system's lymph tissues. In the United States, approximately 79,000 new cases of lymphoma each year are diagnosed. In lymphoma, malignant cancer cells are commonly located in the lymphatic system, which consists of the lymph nodes, bone marrow, liver, stomach, lungs and intestine. In most cases, the disease occurs after a primary tumor is present in the body; in this instance, primary lymphoma is referred to as primary lymphoma.
In some people, lymphomas may not have a single origin; instead, they may develop in multiple organs or sites throughout the body. Common cancers that can begin with a singular cell are Hodgkin's lymphoma (Hazardous Stymphoma), lymphoma vulgaris (Vulgar Cell Carcinoma) and others. There are different types of lymphoma, with some having no known cause; however, some cancers can be linked to exposure to herbicides, insecticides and other toxins over a long period of time. These types of agents are commonly referred to as environmental causes of lymphoma.
Biological causes of lymphoma can be divided into two groups: hereditary and autoimmune. Hereditary causes of lymphoma are passed down from generation to generation within a family. This includes all members of the immediate family, as well as parents, grandparents, and occasionally distant relatives. Inheritance can also occur between unrelated organs such as the breast or the heart, although this is less common.
Autoimmune causes of lymphoma are thought to arise when white blood cells called T cells attack the healthy tissues of the immune system. Commonly occurring autoimmune diseases include multiple sclerosis (MS), Lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, reactive arthritis, hepatitis B, and Hodgkin's lymphoma. Treatment methods for these diseases generally involve some type of immune suppressant drug. Some patients will not respond favorably to this treatment. Chemotherapy is another option that can be used in combination with immunotherapy in order to maximize the effects of treatment. Many patients live into their 70s.
Disease-specific outcomes depend on the type of lymphomas that are identified. Hodgkin's disease is characterized by an increase in both lymphocytic count and lymphatic function, resulting in an increased risk of infection. The most common type of Hodgkin's lymphoma is Hodgkin's lymphoedema, which accounts for approximately 90% of cases. Benign lymphomas and other non-Hodgkins lymphomas are classifying separately. An international prognosis rating for patients with any of these types of cancer depends on the type of lymphoma diagnosed and the extent of it.
Serum ghrelin and hemoglobin A1C ratios do not have a great deal of bearing on survival, according to recent studies. Poor prognosis is seen for those with tumors in the serotonergic control system of the immune system, such as those with lymph node areas. In contrast, high levels of growth hormone receptor B can have an effect on cell proliferation and the ability of cells to divide, leading to an increase in the number of cancers. Other poor prognosis factors would be a history of cancer in the lymph nodes or prostate, a history of multiple cancers in the lymph regions, poor prognosis based on symptoms alone, and low platelet levels.
Patients with a family history of cancer, multiple abnormalities of the immune system such as allergies or disorders such as asthma, a history of multiple cancers, or those with a history of multiple infections are at a much higher risk of developing lymphoma. Researchers are currently trying to find out why this occurs. It has been postulated that genetics can affect the immune system's ability to fight disease. Inheritance also plays a role, as certain sets of genes seem to be more susceptible to illness than others. Environmental factors also play a role, especially those which increase the risk of infection.
Although most people diagnosed with any one of these forms of cancer have a family history of cancer, they are also at a greater risk of developing other forms. For example, if a person who has been diagnosed with lymphoma is also being treated for other forms of cancer, there is an increased risk of developing transitional cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma. Since most people with lymphoma have a family history of skin cancer, researchers have looked at whether skin cancer may be linked to a family history of lymphomas. Some cases have been shown to have a direct relation to a person's lymphatic system or lymph nodes. Although it is impossible to tell for sure what causes lymphomas in different people, there are some definite connections between the disease and hereditary disorders like b-cell lymphoma.
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