What is Malignant Lymphoma of the Spinal Cord?Malignant Lymphoma of the spinal cord is a type of cancer that develops due to the uncontrolled division or multiplication of the lymphocytes or other cells of the lymphatic system (white blood cells) that supplies the spinal cord. In most persons, lymphoma usually affects the vertebral column but in rare cases, it also affects the spinal cord. Malignant lymphoma of the spinal cord grows rapidly and tends to spread to other distant parts of the body. It can develop in any part of the spinal cord but frequently develop in the thoracic (back of chest) and cervical (back f neck) region of the spinal cord. It shows a good prognosis with an overall 5- year survival rate of 73%. It usually affects the people between ages of 50-60 years.
What is the Lymphatic System of the Body?The lymphatic system is a widespread system of lymph nodes and the lymphatic system that makes the immune system of the body and protects it from viruses, bacteria, and other infectious agents and foreign bodies. Lymphatic vessels of the lymphatic system carry lymph a clear fluid that contains infection-fighting cells.
Disease CausesThere is no well-known cause, however, it is usually developed in immune-compromised people such as persons suffering from AIDS, have a current or past infection of Epstein – Barr virus, Or organ transplant patients who are suffering from any chronic disease. These account for 4% of all cancers of the lymphatic system and commonly develop in children.
Signs and SymptomsThe patient may suffer from the following signs and symptoms. These are
- Weakness and numbness of the legs
- Pain in the back
- Urine incontinence (occasional leakage of urine while coughing, sneezing, and laughing)
- Fecal incontinence (occasional leakage of stool while coughing and passing gas)
- Constant fever
- Excessive sweating at night
- Unexplained weight loss
DiagnosisThe following diagnostic tests and procedures can be used to make a diagnosis. These are;
- Imaging techniques like Chest X-ray, CT-scan, MRI, and PET scan to see the site, size, and extent of the tumour.
- Tumour biopsy (tumour biopsy to remove a small sample of tissue for histopathological examination)
- USG-guided fine needle aspiration cytology