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Lymphadenopathy: Wikis


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ICD-10 I88., L04., R59.1
ICD-9 289.1-289.3, 683, 785.6
DiseasesDB 22225
eMedicine ped/1333
MeSH D008206

Lymphadenopathy is a term meaning "disease of the lymph nodes."[1] It is, however, almost synonymously used with "swollen/enlarged lymph nodes". It could be due to infection, auto-immune disease, or malignancy.

Inflammation of a lymph node is called lymphadenitis.[2] In practice, the distinction between lymphadenopathy and lymphadenitis is rarely made. (Inflammation of lymph channels is called lymphangitis.[3])



  • Localized lymphadenopathy : due to localized spot of infection e.g. an infected spot on the scalp will cause lymph nodes in the neck on that same side to swell up
  • Generalized lymphadenopathy : due to generalized infection all over the body e.g. influenza

Associated conditions

Enlarged lymph nodes are a common symptom in a number of infectious and malignant diseases. It is a recognized symptom of many diseases, which include:

  • Immunocompromised etiology: AIDS. Generalized lymphadenopathy is an early sign of infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). "Lymphadenopathy syndrome" has been used to describe the first symptomatic stage of HIV progression, preceding a diagnosis of AIDS.[5]

Patterns of Benign (Reactive) Lymphadenopathy

There are three distinct patterns of benign lymphadenopathy:

  • Follicular hyperplasia - Seen in infections, autoimmune disorders, and nonspecific reactions.
  • Paracortical hyperplasia - Seen in viral infections, skin diseases, and nonspecific reactions.
  • Sinus histiocytosis - Seen in lymph nodes draining limbs, inflammatory lesions, and malignancies.

Bilateral Hilar Lymphadenopathy (BHL)

CT scan of the chest showing lymphadenopathy in the mediastinum due to sarcoidosis.

Bilateral hilar lymphadenopathy is a radiographic term that describes the enlargement of mediastinal lymph nodes. It is easily and most commonly identified by a chest x-ray.


Causes of BHL

The following are causes of BHL:[6]

See also


  1. ^ lymphadenopathy at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  2. ^ lymphadenitis at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  3. ^ lymphangitis at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  4. ^ a b c Status and anamnesis, Anders Albinsson. Page 12
  5. ^ Mindel & Tenant-Flowers (2001) ABC of AIDS; natural history and management of early HIV infection, BMJ, 322 p1290 – 1293
  6. ^ M. Longmore, I. Wilkinson, T. Turmezei, CK. Cheug (2007). Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine 7th Edition. United States, New York: Oxford University Press. p. 179. ISBN 0-19356887-1. 

External links


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