Having in mind how important lymph system is, every worry at the notice of irregularities about it is justified. The most visible fallacy you can see with it is when the lymph nodes/glands are swollen. The causes for this are numerous and they vary from the most superficial ones such as cold or a sore throat to the lethal ones such as cancer. In the following text, we’ll tell you in detail about what do swollen lymph nodes in the neck mean.
Lymph nodes are imperative for our health because they filter the viruses out of our body. These are soft, round-shaped structures which are interconnected with lymph vessels. A fluid called lymph goes through those vessels and is actually responsible for catching viruses and ‘’deporting’’ them to the nodes that kill them off.
This is probably the most common reason the glands in the neck get bigger. A runny nose and coughing are irritating by themselves, and when they’re accompanied with swollen glands it could make even a simple cold unbearable. These are all issues connected with your respiratory system so it should come as no surprise that the glands in the neck get enlarged. They are the ones taking care of your lungs after all.
When streptococcus bacteria infect mucous membranes and tonsils, your neck glands will probably be highly responsive. This is ordinary among school-aged kids and it is very important to diagnose it quickly so as to prevent it from spreading (yes it is contagious). It doesn’t affect children only though, and in some cases, adults can contract it too (10% of the adults).
This disease isn’t treated with antibiotics and medications because it is viral and it usually goes away on its own. Symptoms are very individual for each patient. The first thing you’ll usually notice is a sore throat but also red tonsils or white patches on them. Some other signs include sudden fever, nausea, vomiting, and difficulty in swallowing and of course swollen glands. The disease is sometimes asymptomatic for a certain period and can be confused with the flu.
Kittens are very likely to carry the B Henselae ae bacteria that causes this disease. It develops around 14 days after the infection. This can happen not only when your cat scratches you. It can also take place if it licks your wound. The 1st signs can be pretty indistinct: you’ll feel feverish, lose your appetite. You may have some pus filled lesions at the place of the bite and the nearest gland will probably get swollen too.
This is a highly contagious disease also known as varicella. It is characterized by red blisters that actually go through 3 phases: you first develop red, pink bumps all over your body, then they’ll get filled with pus and start leaking, and the final phase is scabbing which means your blisters are healing.
This is actually most common in children. Before they get blisters they’ll experience fatigue, swollen neck lymph nodes, loss of appetite and fever. When blisters start coming out, patients need to be isolated because any contact with blisters, their saliva or even the nose drops after sneezing can infect other persons.
AIDS is an infection caused by HIV virus. It is infectious but not as much as commonly thought. It can be spread via touch with the infected person’s bodily fluids and through unprotected sex. The difference between HIV and AIDS is that HIV causes AIDS which actually means a lot if you know that people with the HIV virus don’t necessarily have AIDS. If detected early, HIV can be under control for many, many years without developing AIDS.
When you develop AIDS, however, you have to be weary of the first signs: fever, chills, muscle pain, enlarged glands, unintentional weight loss etc. If you had an intercourse without appropriate protection or even had a recent piercing done and you notice these symptoms, you’re urged to test yourself.
This is an infectious disease that is highly contagious and often appears around the mouth or on the genitals. There are 2 types of herpes: HSV-1 and HSV-2. The former one is contracted through kissing, sharing lip balm and utensils, which is why it is also known as oral herpes. Some people are positive for HSV-1 but don’t have outbreaks. If you have outbreaks it is possible that herpes will spread more quickly. HSV-2 is frequently contracted during sexual intercourse when you come into contact with a herpes sore. It isn’t the same case with the HSV-1 because the persons who have it are often asymptomatic.
There are several risk factors for contracting herpes: having unprotected sex, having multiple sex partners, being a female, having sex at a young age or weakened immune system. When it comes to the symptoms they can sometimes be pretty obvious: blistering sores, pain during urination and itching. Some of the symptoms overlap with the ones characteristic for flu: fever, swollen nodes, headaches, tiredness and lack of appetite.
Syphilis is caused by a worm-like, spiral-shaped organism, spirochete, that creeps into the moist mucous membranes of the mouth or genitals. In the first phase of the disease, chances are created which makes syphilis highly contagious. It can be contracted even when you use protection if the ulcer is outside of the vagina, on the scrotum or in the mouth. After 1-5 weeks (left untreated) syphilis will proceed to the secondary stage when you’ll experience hair loss, white patches in the nose/mouth/vagina, sore throat, headaches and skin rash.
According to some studies, there’s a general conclusion that the disease is more common in developing countries as well as in men who have sex with people of the same gender and people who use cocaine and other illicit drugs. The first one to mention this disease was Girolamo Fracastoro who besides being a poet, astronomer, geographer, and botanist, was a physician too. His most important work on this subject was ‘’On Contagion” where he discusses the phenomenon of this contagious infection.
This is one among many STD’s that can cause not only swollen neck glands but also many severe consequences such as infertility, tubal pregnancy, and pelvic infections. It has similar symptoms to gonorrhea because of the method it spreads through the body and it is usually found in cervix, urethra, throat and rectum.
This is a chronic inflammatory disease that most commonly attacks the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis is actually an autoimmune disease that entails cells in your body that turn against your own tissues instead of viruses and bacteria.
This disease doesn’t attack only the joints. It also can affect other organs in your body which is why it is called ‘’rheumatoid disease”. When people under the age of 16 contracts this disease it is called ‘’juvenile idiopathic arthritis”.
The worst case scenario with this illness is an eternal deformation of your joints or eternal damage. It is believed that rheumatoid arthritis is genetically inherited but you are at risk having it if you smoke, are exposed to silica mineral or have a periodontal disease. Some scientists even report that certain gut bacteria could be the cause.
Lymphoma starts when your lymphocytes in the lymph nodes, spleen, bone marrow or any other place where they might be formed, start growing out of control. There are two main types of lymphoma: Hodgkin and Non-Hodgkin. Lymphoma is very treatable and the key is rightly designed treatment.
There are various risk factors for developing the disease: if you’re in your 60’s, if you’re male, if you have weakened immune system due to HIV or rheumatoid arthritis, if you’ve been infected with hepatitis C, have a close relative with lymphoma, if you were exposed to chemicals that kill bugs, were treated for Hodgkin before or were exposed to radiation.
Lymphoma and leukemia are similar at first site but there are some major differences. Leukemia starts with the blood-forming cells inside the bone marrow. The DNA of white blood cells becomes damaged. The outcome of this is the overproduction of blood cells that don’t die when they should and therefore occupy more space. Eventually, these ‘’bad” blood cells overpopulate the good ones.
The symptoms of leukemia usually overlap with the ones of flu which is why you may get feverish and have nausea, night sweats, and tiredness. However, there are other more obvious indicators you should look out for such as poor blood clotting and anemia.
When your lymph nodes are swollen due to lung or breast cancer they’re probably in metastasis. This happens when cancer at the original place matures so much that a part breaks off and ends up in your nodes. This is a really rare case though, but it is still possible.
There are some really rare conditions that cause swollen neck glands such as genetic lipid storage diseases, transplant grant rejections, and sarcoidosis. Swollen lymph nodes in the neck can mean that you are not reacting well to certain medications you’re taking.