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Thread: 3 months swollen lymph nodes

  1. #1
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    3 months swollen lymph nodes

    I noticed swollen lymph nodes in December. Nodes swollen were in neck, axilla and groin. I had drenching night sweats, fatigue and occassional fever until mid January. In Feb, went to MD, blood tests and chest xray were normal. CT revealed swollen lymph nodes as stated above with largest one in axilla measuring 2.7 x 1.3 cm but has fatty center. CT scan said there were several lymph nodes swollen in armpits and groin. Scan not done of neck where I have several palpable, but non painful swollen lymph nodes. Dr. said to just watch and wait. So now it has been 1 month since waiting and 3 months total since first time noticing swollen lymph nodes. I feel fine overall and not having any more night sweats. All lymph nodes still swollen. They don't want to biospy the biggest node because it is located deep in axilla. Any thoughts or suggestions?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Top User po18guy's Avatar
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    Welcome! The vast majority of reasons for enlarged nodes are not cancer. Enlarged (reactive) nodes are simply signs that they are doing their job. Yet, one then wonders just what job are they doing. They react to viruses, bacterial infections and fungal infections, but also to malignant cells. Was your blood checked for mononucleosis? Even if you have had it before, have them check again. I say this because I was having the fatigue/night sweats/fever combination that was consistent with mono. After prodding a bit, I got doctor to test for mono. She announced that I was currently infected with it. Since I had it decades earlier, this told me that my immune system had failed. A failed immune system will let any number of threats past. It is "probably" a good sign that your symptoms went away, but it is worth keeping a close eye on them. If anything at all changes, I would be right back at doctor's.
    Dx 07/2008 Peripheral T-Cell Lymphoma - Not Otherwise Specified, stage 4B.
    "Innumerable" tumors above/below diaphragm + Bone Marrow Involvement.
    4 cycles CHOP+Etoposide plus 4 cycles GND.
    NED at mid-point and completion of chemo 12/2008.
    Relapse 02/2009.
    Scheduled for palliative care.
    Clinical trial of Romidepsin 03/2009. CR, remained NED for 56 (28 day) cycles.
    Possible relapse 07/2013.
    08/2013 "re-induction" therapy of Romidepsin.
    Mixed results on 11/01/2013 scans.
    Treatment stopped 03/03/2014.
    02/10/14 Core needle biopsy indicates either no lymphoma or possible mutation into AngioImmunoblastic T-Cell Lymphoma(?)
    03/17/14 Excisional biopsy finds no evidence of lymphoma.
    CT scans 04/24/14 reveal that nodes and spleen have reduced 60%, apparently on their own.
    Officially on W&W, as odd as that sounds.

    "Now, faith is the substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence of things that are not seen" Hebrews 11:1

  3. #3
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    Thank you for the reply. In Feb had blood tests that ruled out infection and mono and sed rate was normal. That I can recall, I haven't been sick in 6 months or more. My friends/family are urging me to go insist on biopsy now, but I really want to wait- but I don't want to be stupid either.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Top User po18guy's Avatar
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    You know your body best. When something isn't right - if the fever/sweats come back, or if you begin to lose weight (with no lifestyle change), it is time to let doctor know. There are still innumerable causes for what you have experienced, with the majority being non-cancerous. All the best.
    Dx 07/2008 Peripheral T-Cell Lymphoma - Not Otherwise Specified, stage 4B.
    "Innumerable" tumors above/below diaphragm + Bone Marrow Involvement.
    4 cycles CHOP+Etoposide plus 4 cycles GND.
    NED at mid-point and completion of chemo 12/2008.
    Relapse 02/2009.
    Scheduled for palliative care.
    Clinical trial of Romidepsin 03/2009. CR, remained NED for 56 (28 day) cycles.
    Possible relapse 07/2013.
    08/2013 "re-induction" therapy of Romidepsin.
    Mixed results on 11/01/2013 scans.
    Treatment stopped 03/03/2014.
    02/10/14 Core needle biopsy indicates either no lymphoma or possible mutation into AngioImmunoblastic T-Cell Lymphoma(?)
    03/17/14 Excisional biopsy finds no evidence of lymphoma.
    CT scans 04/24/14 reveal that nodes and spleen have reduced 60%, apparently on their own.
    Officially on W&W, as odd as that sounds.

    "Now, faith is the substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence of things that are not seen" Hebrews 11:1

  5. #5
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    Lanri, my I suggest that you speak frankly to your doctor about your lymph node concerns at your next visit. Also, just so you know, there are other non-surgical avenues to keep track of size of lymph nodes such as the use of Ultrasound which can take precise measurements as well and let you know if the nodes are staying the same size, shrinking or growing.

    As po18guy mentions, there are numerous reasons for enlarged lymph nodes and in fact many people with Sjogren's syndrome have enlarged lymph nodes which are completely benign in nature so please don't burden yourself with the thought that this is Lymphoma as of yet. Its not the time right now to do that, however, it is also important to say that enlarged lymph nodes are always to be monitored.

    Lymph nodes affected by lymphoma will grow in size until treatment is received so if yours are shrinking or staying the same size, it may not be lymphoma at all.

    The only way to determine if a lymph node is affected by lymphoma is thru an excisional biopsy where the surgeon actually removes a lymph node or a few more and pathology are done on them. I don't know what the policy is at your cancer clinic, but at mine, the node has to be more than 2.5 cm X 2.5cm in size prior to anyone considering to do an excisional biopsy. Also with many indolent lymphomas (see very slow growing lymphoma), Oncologists often take a wait and watch approach and no treatment is given if the lymphoma never progresses past a certain point as not all indolent lymphomas need treatment.

    If you are concerned, perhaps you may wish to consider getting your doctor to have recurring ultrasounds taken of your lymph nodes every few months where they can measure the exact size to see what progress if any is being made.

    I am speaking from experience in what I am sharing with you as I am currently in chemo treatment for NHL. When I was finally diagnosed, my lymph nodes were 4 to 6 cm and larger in size before I had my exisional biopsy done.

    I would also strongly recommend mentioning the lymph node issue you are experiencing to any other medical drs or specialist if you have one as they should be monitoring this as well.

    Do let us know what happens and best of luck to you.

    Daisy
    Last edited by Daisy1234; 03-06-2012 at 11:02 PM. Reason: double signed my name lol

  6. #6
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    -po18guy and Daisy- thank you for the advice. I'm going to wait and watch. I know I am noticing more nodes in the neck region and the ones in the armpit are getting bigger but not quite the 2.5 x 2.5 size that I can tell. But I still feel really good. I pray your treatments go well for you both as well. God Bless to all of you fighting cancer.

  7. #7
    Administrator Top User Didee's Avatar
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    Just to throw a spanner in the works...my lymph nodes came and went, even the golf ball sized one in my neck. They did not grow much in size other than 2cm for the others. If worried, get one biopsied. I was sent to an ENT who told me he didn't want to biopsy it as it was probably infection and I could end up with a huge ulcer in my neck, so I didn't persue it then. I wish I had as I may have been diagnosed even earlier than I was. My biggest concern when they did decide to do an excisional biopsy was that there would be one still around to actually biopsy. Not everyone follows the textbook.

    No one has ever accused me of being normal, lol.
    Aussie, age 57
    1987 CIN 111. Cervix lasered, no further problems.

    Dx Peripheral T Cell Lymphoma stage 2B bulky, aggressive Dec/09.
    6 chop14 and Neulasta.
    Clean PET April/10, 18 rads 36gy mop up. All done May 2010
    Iffy scan Nov. 2011.
    Scan Feb 2012 .still in remission.
    Still NED Nov 2012. On to yearly bloods now.

    May/2012. U/sound, thyroid scan, FNB. Benign adenoma. A lump in otherwords, nodule if you wish to be specific.

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  8. #8
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    Wow Didee, you must be very unique.

    I specifically asked my ENT Oncologist the question about up and down lymph nodes and was told that that didn't happen and also the policy about the 2.5cm size nodes although I realize that its the policy at my cancer clinic and may not be the case everywhere.

    I'm very glad you brought this aspect up because I wasn't aware of that (no thanks to the ENT Oncologist who told me that this doesn't happen) and I do appreciate the info. I'm getting my chemo treatment under the care of a Hematologist/Oncologist btw and not from that ENT Oncologist. Very happy to hear that you are in remission now in any case.

    Daisy

  9. #9
    Administrator Top User Didee's Avatar
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    My chemo and treatment was also with a Hema/onc. He flies in from Sydney to consult out here. From a major hospital.
    The ENT was just doing the biopsy and sending it away.
    Aussie, age 57
    1987 CIN 111. Cervix lasered, no further problems.

    Dx Peripheral T Cell Lymphoma stage 2B bulky, aggressive Dec/09.
    6 chop14 and Neulasta.
    Clean PET April/10, 18 rads 36gy mop up. All done May 2010
    Iffy scan Nov. 2011.
    Scan Feb 2012 .still in remission.
    Still NED Nov 2012. On to yearly bloods now.

    May/2012. U/sound, thyroid scan, FNB. Benign adenoma. A lump in otherwords, nodule if you wish to be specific.

    CancerForums User Policy

    http://www.cancerforums.net/threads/...picture-policy

    Out of all the things I have lost, I miss my mind the most.

 
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