DefinitionHodgkin lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system drains excess fluid from the blood and protects against infection. Hodgkin lymphoma is different from other forms of lymphoma .
|The Lymphatic Organs|
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CausesThe cause of Hodgkin lymphoma is unknown. It is likely related to complex genetic and environmental factors that lead to changes of the immune system. There are some compelling pieces of data to suggest that it is caused by a virus. The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) has been considered.
Risk FactorsHodgkin lymphoma is more common in men and people ages 15-40 and over 55 years of age. Factors that increase your chance of getting Hodgkin lymphoma include:
- Family history
- History of infectious mononucleosis or infection with Epstein-Barr virus, which causes mononucleosis
- Weakened immune system, including infection with HIV or the presence of AIDS
- Painless swelling of the lymph nodes in the neck, armpit, or groin
- Persistent fatigue
- Night sweating
- Unexplained fever
- Weight loss
- Decreased appetite
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