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Suspicious for lymphoma and scared but no concrete diagnosis yet!

MrGreek14
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Hello everyone i am new to the site and just wanted some opinions and feed back from you very knowledgable and great people out there thank you in advance :)

Well first things first i am a 20 year old male in pretty decent shape play alot of sports dont eat to terrible my family has no history of any illnesses to this day and am pretty active daily. My story begins back in Febuary of this year 2017 a month after i had a case of strep throat that was treated randomly one morning when i woke up with a decently sized lump (2cm by 2cm) i think it was on the left side of my upper neck near the jaw line no other symptoms before or after the discovery by the way. I quickly went to my local doctor to check it out he he felt it and said its large but dose not feel abnormal as he has experience in tumors and nodes he then prescribed me on 2 different types of antibiotics a week each which worked a bit but did not make the lump dissapear. So i was then refferd to an ENT specialst who saw me prescribed another dose of antibiotics again worked but not fully. So i was then sent to do a fine needle aspiration biopsy which came back suspicious for lymphoma bot not for sure because of a high one type of white blood cell count in the fluid but no concrete diagnosis. Now scared and very worried i was sent to and oncologist who ran 2 blood works  to test for a bunch of stuff and see how my counts were an x ray of the chest two ultra sounds of my neck and abdomen and a core needle biopsy. Surprisingly all tests came back fine blood work was perfect ultrasounds didnt show any other lymphnodes enlarged or anything abnormal  just the one lymphnode i had  in my neck which they said wasnt urgent and the core biopsy came back negative with no obvious evidence of lymphoma or any malignancy from the 6 tissues they obtained and said clinical information rule out lymphoma. So threw all this the node seemed to get flatter and get smaller as if it were going back into my neck as time went on. Fast forward to now June of 2017 5 months later still no symptoms maybe just a few hear and there but none that are associated with lymphoma and the lump is still smaller  has not grown in any way or form its very mobile and firm but  has a tenderness to it not hard with a bit of pain when pressed on but still there and a new mini lump has popped up right under it same characteristics no other nodes tho just the two ! I have a follow up on the 22nd of June and am so nervous on what to expect and so confused that 5 months have gone by all these test have been done all came back fine still no symptoms i feel fine eating fine still very active could it still be lymphoma or something really serious and what are the odds at this age and from what i have described? 

Sandy Ray's picture
Sandy Ray
Posts: 97
Joined: May 2017

Well you will hear many of us say we are not Dr so keep all comments in that context.

i have 2 Types of Lymphoma one Hodgkins non aggressive (indolent) and non Hodgkins aggressive.

1. I had some swollen nodes under arm pit and in peck area. No pain Even when pushed on pretty hard.

2. Loss of appetite. Lost 35 lbs in 6 weeks. Not nauseous or anything just no appetite. Not everyone has this symptom.

3. Fatigue and shortness of breath.

4. Night sweats but not every night.

The early symptom I remember most was just a general feeling of something not being right. Not sick just like my blood sugar or something was off.

With all that said I am pretty sure antibiotics would not affect your lymph nodes if it was Lymphoma.

Also keep in mind that Lymphoma is not like most cancers. Many times the treatment and prognosis does not change if found in stage 1-3. Anyway keep with your Dr. And work with them til you have a firm diagnosis.

Keep us informed and let us know how it is going. My thoughts  are it is not Lymphoma. Hope I am right. Just keep searching. 

Sandy Ray

MrGreek14
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Thank you for your reply Sandy ray made me feel a bit better and more assured that things will be okay. I will definitley keep you and everyone else updated hopefully it's nothing and your gut feeling is right. Enough about me how are you doing with your situation sorry to hear? I'd like to know more tho keep me updated :) 

Sandy Ray's picture
Sandy Ray
Posts: 97
Joined: May 2017

MrGreek,

Well I am on a 6 cycle regime. Cycle 5 was yesterday and just before the cycle I got results from my PET scan after cycle 4. It shows Complete Remission so I had my cycle 5 and hopefully one more cycle 6 in 3 weeks and I am all done. The doctor feels real good about my response to the Chemo. I do as well. Will have checkups and pray Lymphoma does not return. Thanks for asking and keep us updated on what you find.

Sandy Ray

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3295
Joined: May 2012

Welcome, MrGreek.

Your set of doctors have been very through in checking this node, and all results indicate away from Lymphoma, but of course all of these indications 'prove' nothing. The following is a clinical generality, but worth knowing:  You are quite young to potentially have Lymophoma, and there is a strong tendency for youths who do get Lymphoma to tend toward aggressive varieties.  Among the most common childhood and young-adult cancers are Leukemia, Lymphoma, 'Bone Cancer," and brain tumors.  But when they occur in youth, they are nearly always aggressive subvariants. Some indolent (non-aggressive) forms of Lymphoma can move very slowly, but seldom does this occur in youth.  The disease is proud to jump out an SHOW ITSELF.  For reference, know that there are around 50 variants of Lymphoma readily recognized in pathology:  5 types of Hodgkin's (HL), and well over 40 types of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (NHL).  

I was first diagnosed with massive involvement, whole body -- lower jaw to groin area, and across both sides, and wrapped around numerous organs.  After I got into full remission (no enlarged nodes detectable via CT), about a year later, I was driving and felt a lump in my upper neck, throat.  It was very detectable, and asymmetric (only on one side).  It gave me quite a fright, and I went to the oncology center for a touch exam.  My oncologist said immediately, "Oh yes, I feel it easily."  He then added, "But this is a gland, not a lymph node." My doc has an astonishing 5 Board Cetifications (Hematology, Medical Oncology, Internal Medicine, and two others), so he is always cetain of what he says.  He said he could easily differentiate, and that the enlarged area was not a node at all.  Any time I have a sore throat or other infections, I can feel them, but what he shared that day has been a great relief.

One thing worth asking about (from a person who would know) is whether the enlargement is a node at all.   Never underestimate what a medical professional might NOT know, since "Medical Mistakes" is the 3rd leading cause of all deaths in the United States.

max

MrGreek14
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Thanks for your reply Max and for taking your time to write such a thorough reply i really appreciate it and it has made me feel a bit better and assured. Alot of what you say and others say on here makes sense and your all very knowledgeable so I'm glad to take advice and hear wisdom. How is your situation going? Glad you have such a good doctor who reassured you!

 

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3295
Joined: May 2012

I am blessed, MrGreek.  Complete remission from Stage III HL, 6 years now.  Complete remission from Stage II Prostate cancer, 2 years.

I can't walk at the moment, some kind of weird foot inflammation, but that is explained at my "Double-Boarder" thread. When you reach the latter decades of life, the warranties all wear out, and finding a good "mechanic" is expensive.  I need a restoration !

Remain health-conscious, avoid smoking or drinking to excess, and use common sense and you should live to about 100.   I hope you find what you need here at the Board,

max

MrGreek14
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Thanks so much max well said honestly and so happy to hear that news and that all is good and your in remission twice your a real fighter you all are in my eyes :)

po18guy
Posts: 996
Joined: Nov 2011

The world Health Organization recognizes 68,069 human illnesses and conditions. About 125 of them are cancers. Our bodies are capable of producing about 150 different symptoms. By simple division 68,069 diseases divided by 150 symptoms is 450+ potential diseases per symptom. Multiply 450 times the number of your symptoms and you see that your chances are very, very low.

MrGreek14
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Wow never looked at it like that to be honest those numbers made me feel alot better and more assured thanks for your comment po18guy ! How's your situation going ? 

po18guy
Posts: 996
Joined: Nov 2011

You can also see why the diagnostic process is so complicated and frustrating at times. All of this began with your nasty infection. That alone is sufficient to explain the enlarged node(s). Nodes can develop scar tissue and never shrink back down. As to how I'm doing, here is brief history.

MrGreek14
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Makes sense thanks for that po18guy hopefully thats true and that also re assures me alot and I know you get this alot but after reading your situation you have to be some sorta superman :o 

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