Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Axillary Lymphadenitis Overview

What is axillary lymphadenitis?
A person with axillary lymphadenitis has inflammation of the lymph nodes in the armpit, usually caused by a viral or bacterial infection in the arm. The infection causes the lymph glands in the armpit to become swollen and tender. Cat scratch disease may also cause axillary lymphadenitis.

What are the symptoms of axillary lymphadenitis?
Common symptoms of axillary lymphadenitis include swollen and tender lymph glands under the arm. Additional symptoms may include: fever, arm pain, arm swelling, and red streaks on the skin of the arm.

How does the doctor treat axillary lymphadenitis?
Treatment for axillary lymphadenitis includes warm compresses under the arm, arm elevation, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain, and antibiotics. In some cases, a needle aspiration, or an incision and drainage procedure may be required to clear up the infection.

Continue to Axillary Lymphadenitis Risk Factors

Last Updated: Sep 28, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Axillary Lymphadenitis References
  1. Giovagnorio F, Rusticali A, Araneo AL. Color and pulsed Doppler evaluation of benign and malignant adenopathy. Clin Imaging. 1997 May-Jun;21(3):163-9. [9156303]
  2. Guffey MB, Dalzell A, Kelly DR, Cassady KA. Ulceroglandular tularemia in a nonendemic area. South Med J. 2007 Mar;100(3):304-8. [17396737]
  3. McEwan J, Basha S, Rogers S, Harkness P. An unusual presentation of cat-scratch disease. J Laryngol Otol. 2001 Oct;115(10):826-8. [11667999]
  4. Olszewski WL. The innate reaction of the human skin lymphatic system to foreign and self-antigens. Lymphat Res Biol. 2005 Summer;3(2):50-7. [16000053]
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