Lymph Nodes are small glands that filter lymph, the clear fluid that circulates through the lymphatic system and they become swollen in response to infection and tumors. Swollen Lymph Nodes occurs in response to illness, infection or stress. Swollen Lymph Nodes are a sign that the lymphatic system is working to rid the body of the responsible agents. Swollen Lymph Nodes are normally caused by ear infection, HIV infection, strep throat, skin infection, cancer, and immune system disorder. While Swollen Lymph Nodes can be as small as the size of a pea and as large as the size of a cherry, some of the common signs of Swollen Lymph Nodes include fatigue, fever, coughing, runny nose and sweating.
HOW IS SWOLLEN LYMPH NODES DIAGNOSED?
Diagnosis is done by a GP who would not only do a routine examination but also ensure that a biopsy is done to rule out cancer.
HOW IS SWOLLEN LYMPH NODES TREATED?
Treatment is directed at the cause. Swollen lymph nodes are not treated unless a bacterial infection of the lymph node is suspected, in which case a trial of antibiotics is given to see if the swelling resolves. Swollen lymph nodes caused by cancer may not shrink back to normal size until the cancer is treated. Cancer treatment may involve removing the tumor or any affected lymph nodes. It may also involve chemotherapy to shrink the tumor.
DID YOU KNOW?
Lymph nodes can be found underneath the skin in many areas including:
• in the armpits
• under the jaw
• either side of the neck
• either side of the groin
• above the collarbone