Hodgkin’s Lymphoma: An Environmental Scan
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A particular challenge in identifying lymphomas is the absence of symptoms, or when symptoms do appear they are common to a number of other ailments. A majority of individuals, who are diagnosed with HL have no symptoms. For those who do, the primary issue is swelling of the lymph nodes that may or may not be painful and most often occurs in the neck region although can also appear in the armpits and groin areas (National Cancer Institute 2007b). Other symptoms are known as systemic, meaning they apply to the whole body such as weight loss, night sweats, decreased energy and a specific pattern of intermittent fevers, which are known as B symptoms. In very few cases, a persistent itching, which gets worse over time is also documented in a select few cases. A final but infrequent sign of HL is pain in the region of the tumor after the consumption of alcohol although the reason for this remains elusive (Punnett, Tsang, and Hodgson 2010) (Lymphoma Research Foundation 2009).