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Avatar universal

Lymphoma

I am a teenager and found a lump in my abdomen a little over two weeks ago. There was also a lot of swelling around my entire stomach. The lump was hard and tender to the touch. I also presented with other symptoms such has low grade fevers (on and off), night sweats, difficulty breathing, loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, and the list goes on. I went to the ER on Sunday after the lump got larger and the swelling was becoming worse. My ER doctor ran a CBC (complete blood count) and a CT on my chest and abdomen. Both came back normal but he told me he was still concerned about Lymphoma and that the CT "maybe" could have missed it. He said he was going to treat it as an infection with antibiotics and if the lump hadn't gone away in a week, I'd need a biopsy. I came home and I began to feel one hundred times worse, it was unbearable. We called the hospital I had went to earlier in the day and they thought I would need to be admitted so they suggested I go to the children's hospital. I went, and got a brand new intern as my doctor, who refused to do anymore tests or listen to a word I said. She did the same CBC and sent me home. Last night, I found a new lump in my lower abdomen. It was hard also and tender to the touch. I also had pain on my sides and in my neck. I went to my general practitioner, who as I expected, didn't listen to me. She didn't want me to get a biopsy, and totally blew me off. She did do more blood work though - another CBC, something else and a LDH. She said "if" something alarming was found in my blood work, we'd do an ultrasound. She also told me they found fluid in my abdomen (which I didn't know before). I am becoming aggravated with doctors and not being listened to… as I know my own body and know that something is not right. Has anyone here dealt with symptoms like this or doctors of this nature? Any suggestions?

Thanks!
60 Responses
907672 tn?1381029323
Hi laurenmarie,
It sounds like you got something going on, especially with the tender lumps and fluid in your abdomen.  Could you go back to the original doctor that was willing to do a biopsy?  A biopsy is what will tell you for sure what you're dealing with.  One thing I will say is most lumps are painless, but not necessary all.  Pain is typically not associated with lymphoma unless it is causing pressure on a nearby organ or nerve.  Also, I've never heard of lymphoma causing fluid in the abdomen.  Did you get any kind of explaination for the fluid?  Why did they do two CBC's?  Sorry...lots of questions.  It just seems to me that if lymphoma isn't on their radar, what else is?  
Avatar universal
The original doctor was just an ER doctor... I couldn't go back to him. He was the only one who really listened to me and my concerns. The others kind of acted like I was silly. Apparently certain types of cancer can cause fluid in the abdomen - but I'm not 100% sure. I've actually now had three CBC's, as my GP ran another one today. I don't know why they keep checking it. Lymphoma was the concern of the first doctor - my GP didn't completely rule it out, but didn't seem to believe that was the problem. A hernia was also ruled out. They haven't told me anything else they think it could be - honestly I think they are stumped and don't know what is wrong with me. Thanks for the response!
1081992 tn?1389907237
COMMUNITY LEADER
hi, the lymphoma-associated fluid you are thinking of is called "ascites". But ascites can also be from other causes. Is it getting bigger and bigger?

I would think they can get a sample with a needle, maybe US guided unless it is very apparent and near the surface.

a CBC is simple and inexpensive, so it doesn't hurt to do repeat tests to see if anything has changed (and/or a previous test might have been faulty)

still, I'd guess lymphoma is not likely

Avatar universal
Yeah, I've heard of ascites. It's gotten bigger since when I first found the lump. The lump is a little harder to find now since there is swelling/fluid around it. There's also a new lump a little lower.

My GP made an appointment for me with a surgeon, hopefully that'll be another step forward.

My pain has gotten worse in my stomach and lower back. My blood work came back normal again. Thanks for your response!
1081992 tn?1389907237
COMMUNITY LEADER
I'd think it should be possible to distinguish fluid from an abscess from other things (granuloma?) by the CT. You can get a copy of the CT report and look for key words - I'd very much recommend that rather than being in the dark while you wait for the next appt.

Did you travel to any exotic places?

If the initial ab lump is near the surface... lymphoma would tend to be deeper.

I'd guess the next step is for the surgeon to get a sample of the fluid, and also he can drain the area to relieve symptoms. you can watch him do it. They'll be able to tell something immediately from the color.

The ascites AFAIK can be leeching of lymphatic fluid out of lymph vessels (which are more permeable that blood vessels)  or maybe some exudate from some unusual cells in the area. Your pain might be simply from pressure.

I assume urinary output is normal else you would have mentioned that... also yellowish eyes.

Lymphoma is not likely at your age, but Hodgkin's is more common that NHL.





Avatar universal
I actually called to get a copy of my CT, and am going to pick it up on a disc tomorrow.

I've never traveled out of the country...

We'll see what the surgeon says, hope it brings me some relief. I am feeling a lot of pain and just discomfort in general. The word sarcoma has been thrown around. (another type of cancer... much more rare though)

Yes, most everything is normal. The lumps and symptoms accompanied with it have seen to come out of nowhere.

The "main" lump (first one I found) is a little deeper. You have to really poke around and push to feel it. Again, thanks for your help!
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