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The lymphatic system is made up of vessels and glands.

The lymphatic system is made up of vessels and glands.
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Lymphoma symptoms

1-minute read

Lymphoma is a cancer that affects the lymphatic system, which is part of your immune system. The lymphatic system is made up of a network of tubes (lymph vessels) and glands (lymph nodes) throughout your body.

The first symptom of lymphoma is often a painless swelling in one or more lymph node, usually in the neck, armpit or groin. The swelling is caused by a build-up of abnormal lymphocytes (white blood cells) in the lymph node.

Many people have swollen nodes due to an infection. So if you have swollen nodes, don’t panic - just get them checked by a doctor.

Other symptoms of lymphoma include:

  • unexplained tiredness or fatigue
  • night sweats or fever
  • unexplained poor appetite or weight loss
  • widespread itching
  • bruising or bleeding easily
  • trouble getting over infections
  • pain in the chest or stomach area
  • swollen tummy
  • unexplained, persistent cough or shortness of breath
  • headaches or vision changes
  • red patches on the skin

Please note that many other conditions, such as the flu or a virus, can have the same symptoms as lymphoma. If you or some you know is experiencing these symptoms, and you do not know the cause, it is important to see a doctor.

Last reviewed: January 2019

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