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Lymphadenopathy affecting a node in the neck.

What Is Lymphadenopathy?

Lymphadenopathy is an alteration of lymph nodes that is characterized by enlargement of lymph nodes greater than 1.5 cm caused by proliferation (increased production) of lymphocytes within the node.

Q: What are lymph nodes?

A: Lymph nodes are part of the lymphatic system, acting to protect body fluids by filtering out and destroying bacteria and other harmful substances from lymph that is continually carried to them by lymph vessels.

Cleaned lymph is carried away from the nodes by lymph vessels to the bloodsteam where it helps forms blood plasma. Lymph nodes produce various blood cells needed to fight infection which includes lymphocytes.

Lymphocytes are small white blood cells that plays a major role in defending the body against disease. There are two types of lynphocytes: B cells, which make antibodies that attack bacteria and toxins, and T cells which attack body cells themselves when they have been taken over by viruses or become cancerous.

Lymph nodes that become enlarged doing battle with an infection or as a result of injury nearby usually resolve with treatment of the infection or injury. However, if the cause is cancer, the nodes would need to be treated as well as the cancer.

What Is Lymphadenopathy In Celiac Disease and/or Gluten Sensitivity?


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