ZocdocAnswersAre lymph nodes cancerous?

Question

Are lymph nodes cancerous?

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Answer

I recommend that you discuss your concern with your doctor. Lymph nodes are a normal part of the human body, and have a very important role in fighting infection and preventing the spread of some cancers. People commonly notice their lymph nodes more frequently when they are enlarged, obviously. They become enlarged when they are more active, such as at times when they are fighting an infection or responding to some other change in the body. In some instances, when a cancer starts in one part of the body, it will spread through the lymphatics to involve the lymph nodes before it goes to other body parts. In these cases, it can be considered that the lymph nodes are protecting the body by filtering out these particles before they spread elsewhere. They can then become involved themselves, and therefore occasionally have to be removed. There are some cancers that can begin in the lymph nodes as well, and these can usually be treated with medications that are available. If you have specific concerns about your lymph nodes, or the lymph nodes of someone else, you should please discuss these concerns with your doctor. He or she will be able to put this information in better context. Please speak with your doctor.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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