Pathophysiology of Hodgkin’s Disease

Provide an in depth discussion on the pathophysiology of Hodgkin’s disease as it occurs over time. Include signs and symptoms, diagnostic studies and the underlying pathophysiologic process causing the signs and symptoms.

Hodgkin’s disease is a form of blood cancer that originates from the lymphatic system. In particular, the condition hails fom the body’s white blood cells, usually tasked with ensuring that the immune system is robust to protect the body from germs. The abnormal growth of lymphocytes usually signals the progression from its localized position to the rest of the body.

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According to Kasper et al. (2018), Hodgkin’s disease represents 10% of all lymphomas diagnosed annually and a severe public health issue. Hodgkin’s disease is typically caused by a clonal transformation of B-cells, which then results in the development of malignant lymphoma. Although its exact cause is still unknown, persons infected with the Epstein-Barr virus, those undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy patient are at a higher risk of developing the disease. Defects in T-cell function often mean that the condition has progressed to an advanced stage characterized by a depression of humoral immunity (Engert & Younes, 2015, p. 78).

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The most common symptoms of Hodgkin’s disease are painless lymph node swelling, extreme weight loss, and severe itching. Correspondingly, there are some diagnostic studies that can be conducted when seeking to establish whether the disease afflicts a patient. The most common of these is a physical exam that allows a doctor to look for signs of swollen lymph nodes. Imaging tests such as X-rays and computed tomography (C.T) scans are also recommended during diagnosis since these methods allow doctors to pinpoint the lymphoma’s exact location. Furthermore, the removal of lymph nodes for testing allows a doctor to conduct a biopsy after a series of lab tests. Cytokine’s irritation on the skin causes constant itching. Congruently, the unexplained weight loss is a result of the cancer cells using up the body’s energy while attempting to fend them off. The swelling is a result of an excessive onslaught on white blood cells at the lymph glands.

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