Know More About Hodgkin Lymphoma
This type of cancer affects the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system of the body is responsible for fighting the infections and equipped with the immune cells. In this condition, the white blood cells grow out of control and divide repeatedly and aggressively. It leads to swelling of the lymoh nodes and ultimately the growths in the forms of tumor protrude out of the body.
The advancements in the medical field have let to modern diagnostic tests yhat help in early detection as well as treatment. The prognosis techniques have improved over time.
- The condition arises in the white blood cells that fight with the infections in the body. The changes or the genetic mutation in the lymphocytes causes the cells to convert into cancerous tumors through rapid multiplication. The additional cells being formed are responsible for crowding the lymph nodes leading to swelling.
- The increasing age also increases tge risk of developing the disease. Also, if an individual has a family history of lymphoma, the chances are increased.
Illness like Past Epstein-Barr infection also increases the risk of development of Hodgkin lymphoma.
- Also infection like HIV leads to increased risk of lymphoma.
Types of Hodgkin lymphoma
Classical Hodgkin Lymphoma
It is a more common type of disease that leads to the formation of Reed- Sternberg cells in the lymoh nodes. The cells become large and infectious in this case. It can be further divided into sub types like mixed cellularity Hidgkin’s lymphoma, nodular sclerosis Hodgkin lymphoma, lymphocytes rich Hodgkin lymphoma, and lymphocyte depleted Hodgkin lymphoma.
Nodular lymphocyte predominant Hodgkin lymphoma
It is a rarely occurring form of Hodgkins lymphoma where the affected cells are also termed as the popcorn cells. The name has been set due to the kind of appearance that they acquire. It is diagnosed at an early stage and usually requires less invasive procedures to be treated.
Signs and Symptoms
- Swelling of the lymph nodes in armpits, groin, or the neck that does not cause pain
- Frequently dealing with fever
- Night sweats
- Constantly feeling tired
- Unintended or Unexplainable weight loss
- Severe itching
- Pain in lymph nodes after alcohol consumption
The tumors of the lymphatic system can be diagnosed with the help of following diagnostic tests:
The primary approach for diagnosis remains to be physical examination of the patient. The specialist asks about the symptoms and checks for swollen lymph nodes in the groin, neck, or liver and spleen. A family history and medical history is also taken to identify and relate the cause of development of the disease if any.
The blood samples can be taken by the specialists to check for the levels of certain elements, chemicals, or the tumor markers. Any kind of increase or decrease in the potential elements is analyzed and the presence of cancer cells is detected.
The imaging techniques like CT scans, PET, and XRay are performed to look for the possible signs of the Hodgkin lymphoma. The imaging tests provide with the detailed pictures of the body organs and help the specialists to look for the functioning of the body parts.
Removal of the lymph node
This is done during a lymph node biopsy. If the doctors suspect an infectious tissue, they remove it during the biopsy and send it for examination in the laboratory. The sample of lymphoma cells will be tested by the technicians and will help to determine the type or grade of the cancer cells.
Bone marrow biopsy
A bone marrow biopsy involves the collection of a sample from the bone marrow. A needle is usually inserted into the hip bone and the sample is collected. It is then used for testing and analysis.
Based on these tests only and the results, the types and stages of cancer are determined.
Side effects of such procedures
- Chemotherapy can lead to issues like nausea, vomiting, and loss of hairs as well. It can cause decrease red blood cell count too. In the case of long term complications, thus treatment may lead to health problems like lung damage, heart disease, occurrence of other types of cancer, or fertility problems.
- Radiation therapy can cause problems like soreness, dry mouth, shortness of breath, and throid problems too. Apart from this, the condition of underactive throidism can also develop, known as hypothyroidism. In case, the radiations that are directed towards chest can cause heart and lung problems as well.
- Bone marrow transplant can pose the risk of developing more vulnerability to infections, easy bruising and bleeding, reduced red blood cell count, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, etc.
- Targeted drug therapy can lead to issues like mouth sores, changes in nails, increased blood pressure, problems in wound healing and blood clotting, skin problems like dry skin, rashes, and fatigue.
- Immunotherapy may also lead to issues like chills, fever, dizziness, weakness, headache, fatigue, pain in joints or muscles, bleeding, swelling of affected area, and several others.
To speak of the treatments in the case of Hodgkin lymphoma, the aim of the doctors remains to be the destruction of the lymphoma cells to a great extent. Based on the level of complexity that the cancer cells have reached, the type of treatment to be done is determined.
Chemotherapy is a method of treatment that uses certain drugs to kill the cancer cells. These drugs or medications can be taken through the vein in the arm or through a pill as well. This treatment is either combined with the other treatments like surgery or can also be administered individually. It can also be combined with targeted drug therapy as well.
The Radiation therapy is used to target the cancer cells using high beams of rays or protons. The affected lymph nodes are targeted by the radiations and the tumors formed there are killed. During this procedure, the patient lies down on the table and a large machine mobes around which is the source of radiations. This treatment is also used in combination with the chemotherapy.
Targeted Drug Therapy
In the case of targeted drug therapy, the treatment focuses on the weakness or abnormalities of the cancer cells. The drugs used block such weaknesses of the cancer cells and kills them. This treatment is combined with chemotherapy to treat the nodular lymphocyte- predominant Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Immunotherapy focuses on the immune system of the body to help the immune cells to fight the cancer cells. The tumor cells produce certain proteins that let them hide them from the immune cells. Immunotherapy interferes with this process of hiding from the normal cells. It can be considered as a suitable option if the body doesn’t respond to other treatments.
Bone Marrow Transplant
It is also known as stem cell transplant and is a method to replace the diseased bone marrow, that is, affected by the cancer cells. It is filled with the healthy stem cells that can aid in the development and growth of a new bone marrow. In case the body does not respond to other treatments, it is a considerable option.
Why rely on Ayurveda?
Ayurveda is an ancient system of medicine that has its roots in India. Since years, the Ayurvedacharyas used several therapies to treat the individuals with various disorders. The herbal drugs are used to treat the issues that the individuals face and they do not pose any threat to life or provide with any kind of consequences. There are no side effects attached with the inclusion of Ayurvedic herbs in the treatments.
Triphala is a well known herb that is used to understand the imbalances of the lymphatic system and address them. It possesses some anti cancerous properties and helps in regressing the tumors and thereby help provide relief from discomfort and pain. These herbal medications can act as an immunity booster for the body. These purify and detoxify the body by acting on the root causes of the disease.
Another potential herb is turmeric that contains curcumin that helps in limiting the growth of the cancer cells. It also helps the treatments like radiotherapy and chemotherapy to become effective. Several diet changes and foods like broccoli and carrot can be beneficial when someone is suffering from cancer. The foods rich in carotene should be consumed so that the levels of anti oxidants are maintained in the body.