Diseases And Treatments

Burkitt's Lymphoma - What It Is, Symptoms and Treatments

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Burkitt's Lymphoma - What It Is, Symptoms and Treatmentsthis condition. In addition, theBurkitt's lymphomaa rare and aggressive form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is a type of cancer of the lymphatic system, which helps your body fight infections.

OBurkitt's lymphomais more common in children living in sub-Saharan Africa, where it is linked to Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and chronic malaria. OBurkitt's lymphomais also seen in other places, including the United States. Outside Africa,Burkitt's lymphomais more likely to occur in people with compromised immune systems.

Types of Burkitt's Lymphoma:There are three types ofBurkitt's lymphomawhich are: sporadic, endemic and related to immunodeficiency. The types differ by geographical location and the parts of the body affected.

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Burkitt's Lymphoma Sporadic:OBurkitt's lymphomaSporadic occurs outside Africa, but is rare in other parts of the world. It is sometimes associated with EBV. It tends to affect the lower abdomen, where the small intestine ends and the large intestine begins.

Endemic Burkitt's Lymphoma:This kind ofBurkitt's lymphomais most frequently seen in Africa near the equator, where it is associated with chronic malaria and EBV infection. The facial bone and jaw are most often affected. But the small intestine, kidneys, ovaries and breast may also be involved.

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Burkitt's Lymphoma Related to Immunodeficiency:This kind ofBurkitt's lymphomais associated with the use of immunosuppressive drugs, such as those used to prevent transplant rejection and to treat HIV and AIDS.

Causes of Burkitt's Lymphoma:a rare and aggressive form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is a type of cancer of the lymphatic system, which helps your body fight infections.

OBurkitt's lymphomais more common in children living in sub-Saharan Africa, where it is linked to Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and chronic malaria. OBurkitt's lymphomais also seen in other places, including the United States. Outside Africa,Burkitt's lymphomais more likely to occur in people with compromised immune systems.

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Burkitt's Lymphoma Symptoms:OBurkitt's lymphomacan cause fever, weight loss and night sweats. Other symptoms ofBurkitt's lymphomavary by type.

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Burkitt's Lymphoma Sporadic:Symptoms ofBurkitt's lymphomainclude:

  • abdominal bloating
  • Distortion of facial bones
  • Night sweats
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Extended thyroid
  • Enlarged tonsils

Endemic Burkitt's Lymphoma:Symptoms ofBurkitt's lymphomainclude swelling and distortion of facial bones and rapid growth of lymph nodes. The enlarged lymph nodes are not soft. Tumors can grow extremely quickly, sometimes doubling their size within 18 hours.

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HIV-Related Lymphoma:The symptoms of HIV-related lymphoma are similar to those of the sporadic type.

Burkitt's Lymphoma Risk Factors:OBurkitt's lymphomais more likely to affect children. It is rare in adults. The disease is more common in men and people with compromised immune systems, such as those with HIV or AIDS. The incidence is higher in:

  • North Africa
  • Middle East
  • South America
  • Papua New Guinea

Sporadic and endemic forms are associated with EBV infection. Insect-borne viral infections and herbal extracts that promote tumor growth are possible contributory factors.

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Burkitt's Lymphoma Diagnoses:A diagnosis ofBurkitt's lymphomabegins with a medical history and physical examination. A biopsy of tumors confirms the diagnosis. The bone marrow and central nervous system are often involved. The bone marrow and spinal fluid are usually examined to see how far the cancer has spread.

OBurkitt's lymphomais staged according to the involvement of lymph nodes and organs. Involvement of the bone marrow or central nervous system means that you have stage 4. A CT scan and magnetic resonance imaging can help identify which organs and lymph nodes are involved.

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Burkitt's Lymphoma Treatments:OBurkitt's lymphomais usually treated with combined chemotherapy. The chemotherapy agents used in the treatment ofBurkitt's lymphomainclude:

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  • Cytarabine
  • Cyclophosphamide
  • Doxorubicin
  • Vincristine
  • Methotrexate
  • Etoposide

Treatment of monoclonal antibodies with rituximab can be combined with chemotherapy. Radiation treatment can also be used with chemotherapy.

Chemotherapy drugs are injected directly into the spinal fluid to prevent cancer from spreading to the central nervous system. This method of injection is referred to as "intrathecal". Patients receiving intensive chemotherapy have the best treatment results.

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In countries with limited medical resources, treatment is often less aggressive and less successful. Children withBurkitt's lymphomahave the best prognosis. The presence of intestinal obstruction requires surgery.

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