Lymph nodes, which are organs packed with networks of lymph capillaries and located all over the human body, are part of the lymphatic system that fights off bacterial and viral infections in the body. Because they are body organs, lymph nodes are prone to infections, such as sarcoidosis disease, which occurs due to insufficient amounts of vitamin D in the body. A key symptom of the disease is the swelling of certain body organs including lymph nodes, lungs, and eyes. However, if you have swollen lymph nodes, it is important to note that a myriad of other factors may be the cause of your condition. Therefore, identifying the right cause of swollen lymph nodes is a key step to receiving timely and effective treatment.
Here are some of the other common causes of swollen lymph nodes:
- An abscess in the mouth (may affect lymph nodes located in the mouth)
- The flu and other sinus infections
- Mouth sores
- Skin infection
- Medical drugs such as Phenytoin and drugs used in typhoid immunization
- Swollen limbs that indicate a blockage in the lymphatic system
- Autoimmune disorders, such as HIV and Arthritis, may also cause lymph nodes to swell
- Some types of cancers such as Leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
It is important to note the following:
- The causes of swollen lymph nodes may differ depending on the part of the body where the swelling occurs.
- In most cases, the swollen lymph nodes indicate that the body is fighting off an infection and the swelling goes down in a couple of days without any need for treatment once the lymphatic system effectively fights off the infection.
It is important to contact a doctor as soon as possible when any of the following happens:
- The swelling in your lymph nodes persists for several weeks.
- The swollen lymph nodes are inflamed, red, and tender.
- Your lymph nodes harden.
- You get a fever while your lymph nodes are still swollen.
- You experience night sweats or unusual weight loss.
- In addition to the swollen lymph nodes, you also have a sore throat and/or shortness of breath.
In most cases, swelling in the lymph nodes indicates that there is a problem with the body’s immune system. Therefore, it is important to examine your lymph nodes frequently in order to identify any swelling as soon as possible and get the appropriate treatment.
- http://www.cedars-sinai.edu/Patients/Health-Conditions/Sarcoidosis.aspx – Sarcoidosis
- http://www.emedicinehealth.com/swollen_lymph_glands/article_em.htm – Swollen Lymph Glands
- http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/swollen-lymph-nodes/DS00880/DSECTION=symptoms – Swollen lymph nodes Symptoms
- http://www.thelymphnodes.com/swollen-lymph-node.php – Swollen Lymph Nodes