Large cell lymphoma
What is large cell lymphoma?
Large cell lymphoma is a type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. It’s a cancer in the lymphatic system, which is part of the immune system, which works to fight disease and infections. Large cell lymphoma may develop in the lymph system tissue in the neck, chest, throat or abdomen.
Sometimes, it spreads to the skin or tissues under the skin. It may also spread to bone marrow and the brain.
Types of large cell lymphoma
The main subtypes of large cell lymphomas are:
- non-specified large cell lymphoma
- immunoblastic lymphoma
- anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL)
What causes large cell lymphoma?
The specific cause of non-Hodgkin lymphoma is unclear. Some theories include:
- exposure to viral infections such as Epstein-Barr virus and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
- exposure to chemotherapy and radiation therapy
- hereditary abnormalities including ataxia telangiectasia, X-linked lymphoproliferative disease or the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome
Is large cell lymphoma common?
Large cell lymphoma accounts for about 30 percent of non-Hodgkin lymphomas in children. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma as a group is the third most common childhood cancer.
- It occurs most often in children who are between the ages of 7 and 11, but can occur at any age from infancy to adulthood.
- It affects boys almost three times more often than girls.
- It’s most common among Caucasian children.
What are the symptoms of large cell lymphoma?
The disease can progress quickly from a few days to a few weeks. While symptoms may vary child-to-child, the most common include:
- respiratory problems, pain with deep breaths (dyspnea), cough and/or wheezing
- abdominal pain
- painless swelling of the lymph nodes in neck, chest, abdomen, underarm, or groin
- sore throat
- fullness in groin area from node involvement
- bone and joint pain
- night sweats
- tiring easily (fatigue)
- weight loss/decreased appetite
- itching of the skin
- recurring infections