Lymph node swelling is generally caused by bacteria or viruses and rarely develops due to cancer. It is an indication that the body is fighting against disease. The swelling is taken down when treated. The lymph nodes play a crucial role in fighting against infections. They capture and filter bacteria and viruses, leaving other parts of body uninfected. The lymph nodes can be noticed more in armpits, jawbone, neck, and groin. The protrusions felt in these areas may be lymph node growth. Treatment generally depends on the cause of the infection. Treatment may sometimes be resting at home or taking some medications depending on severity of infection. Lymph node swelling requires the supervision of a doctor.
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Adenoids (lymph nodes) are small nodes filtering clear lymph fluid circulating in the lymphatic system. They also store white blood cells which kill invading organisms, and protect the body against diseases. They play a vital role in fighting against infections.
When bacteria, viruses, and other organism which may cause disease pass through the lymphatic ducts, they are blocked by the lymph nodes and they accumulate these harmful organisms by keeping them inside.
Lymph nodes swell due to an infection of the area. For example, lymph nodes in the neck may swell as a result of an upper respiratory infection, such as a cold. Lymph node swelling shows the lymphatic system works to save the body from harmful organisms. (1)
Lymph node growth indicates that there is a health problem. The growth can be noticed easily. In some cases, it also begin to shrink as other symptoms disappear. If you feel painful swelling in your lymph nodes and it lasts more than a few days, consult your doctor. Swollen lymph nodes without any pain or tenderness can be a symptom of a serious health condition such as cancer.
Treatment may vary depending on the causes of lymph node swelling. Sometimes the swollen lymph nodes can shrink spontaneously without any treatment. In such cases, the doctor only prefers to monitor the patient. If the swelling is caused by an infection, you may need to take antibiotics or antiviral drugs.
In case of pain or inflammation, medicines containing aspirin and ibuprofen may help. The lymph node swelling caused by a cancer may not shrink until the cancer is treated. Sometimes tumor or affected lymph nodes must be removed during cancer treatment. (4)
Chemotherapy is also a part of cancer treatment. The doctor will decide on the most appropriate treatment for the patient. Methods relieving the symptoms of lymph node swelling Sometimes simple methods that can be applied at home can be relieving. For example: