Early detection and prevention of Hodgkin's diseaseThe causes of lymph node cancer are not yet known. In contrast, certain factors are thought to increase the risk of developing the disease. Experts suspect that there is a connection between Hodgkin's disease and the "Epstein Barr Virus", the causative agent of Pfeiffer's glandular fever. However, infections with this virus are common, while lymph node cancer is rare. It is considered likely that genetic factors are responsible for an abnormal immune system response to a common pathogen.
Important warning signs for Hodgkin's disease
Hodgkin's disease has an insidious onset, usually localized to a lymph node. Affected lymph nodes swell but usually do not cause pain. Most often, the disease begins in the neck and chest area, rarely in the armpits or groin.
Especially in the neck area, enlarged lymph nodes can be felt as a firm, rubbery structure and are often the first sign of Hodgkin's disease.
Other characteristic symptoms include:
– loss of appetite and unwanted weight loss – periodic fevers of unexplained cause – night sweats – itching – fatigue, tiredness and poor performance – dry cough and shortness of breath – chest, abdominal or back pain
If you observe one or more of the described symptoms, it does not mean that you have Hodgkin's lymphoma! All symptoms can also occur with harmless infections and diseases. In children in particular, most lymph node enlargements are due to infections, especially viral infections.
Nevertheless, if the symptoms persist for more than two weeks, you should definitely consult a doctor to clarify the cause of your complaints. Keep in mind that the earlier this cancer is diagnosed, the more effectively it can be treated! Hodgkin's disease in particular has a very good chance of being cured if it is diagnosed at an early stage.
What you can do yourself?
There is no specific prevention against lymph node cancer. However, a healthy diet. Lifestyle advisable in any case.
In addition, it is important that everyone knows and observes his or her body and notices changes as early as possible. As with many other cancers, the sooner Hodgkin's disease is diagnosed, the more effective treatment will be. This cancer in particular has a very good chance of being cured if it is detected at an early stage. Therefore, if you experience symptoms such as those described above, you should consult a physician immediately, even if your symptoms may have harmless causes.
What does your doctor do?
Enlarged lymph nodes are first thoroughly examined, as are blood and urine. X-rays of the lungs, sinuses, and teeth, as well as an ultrasound of the abdomen and pelvis, can also be helpful in looking for other tumors. If the physician does not find an infectious-inflammatory cause, the lymph node must be surgically removed and the tie examined in the laboratory. This is the only way to diagnose Hodgkin's disease.
 V. Diehl, A. Jostings, S. Schmitz: Hodgkin's lymphoma, in: Kurzgefasste interdisziplinare Leitlinien, Deutsche Krebsgesellschaft (Ed.), W. Zuckschwerdt Verlag 2008  Christine Mauz-Korholz et. al.Procarbazine-Free OEPA-COPDAC Chemotherapy in Boys and Standard OPPA-COPP in Girls Have Comparable Effectiveness in Pediatric Hodgkin's Lymphoma: The GPOH-HD-2002 Study, Journal of Clinical Oncology 28:3680-3686, August 2010  H.-J. Schmoll. K. Hoffken, K. Possinger (eds.): Compendium of Internal Oncology, Springer Verlag 2006
Prof. Dr. Dieter Korholz, Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Center for Pediatrics, Justus Liebig University Giessen, UKGM Giessen site Prof. Dr. med. Christine Mauz-Korholz, Hodgkin Study Center, Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Center for Pediatrics, Justus Liebig University Giessen, UKGM Giessen Site
Last content update on: 10.01. After the treatment of Hodgkin's disease women may experience. Men present special difficulties. Secondary tumors may also occur. Here you will find important information.
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Symptoms of Hodgkin's disease
Hodgkin's disease begins insidiously. The first symptom of the disease is often enlarged lymph nodes, which usually do not cause pain. Here you can find important information.