Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Lymphoma of the Brain Anatomy

To better understand cerebral lymphoma, it helps to understand the anatomy of the lymphatic system.

The lymphatic system consists of a network of lymph vessels and lymph nodes throughout the body. The system transports a type of white blood cell, called lymphocytes. These cells play a role in fighting infection.

There are two main types of lymphocytes:

  • B lymphocytes
  • T lymphocytes

The lymphatic system performs two major functions:
  • Stores and transports cells that fight infection
  • Removes excess fluid from body tissues

The lymphatic system consists of:
  • Lymph vessels:
    • A network of vessels throughout the body that transport white blood cells called lymphocytes.
    • There are two main types of lymphocytes: B-cells and T-cells.
  • Lymph glands:
    • The lymph vessels connect in many areas known as lymph nodes.
    • The nodes act as filters to fight infection in the body.
    • Lymph nodes can enlarge in response to inflammation.
    • This can occur due to cancer or an infection nearby the lymph vessels.

Anatomy examples:
  • Areas of lymph nodes in the body
  • Areas in the body where lymph nodes can be felt
  • Abnormal lymph node cells due to Hodgkin's disease
  • Lymphatic system around the armpit and breast
  • Lymphatic system in the abdomen

Last Updated: Dec 7, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Lymphoma of the Brain References
  1. Klencke B, Kaplan L. Advances and future challenges in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Curr Opin Oncol. 1998 Sep;10(5):422-7. [9800112]
  2. Schlegel U, Pels H, Oehring R, Blumcke I. Neurologic sequelae of treatment of primary CNS lymphomas. J Neurooncol. 1999 Jul;43(3):277-86. [10563434]
  3. Shah GD, DeAngelis LM. Treatment of primary central nervous system lymphoma. Hematol Oncol Clin North Am. 2005 Aug;19(4):611-27, v. [16083826]
  4. Weller M. Glucocorticoid treatment of primary CNS lymphoma. J Neurooncol. 1999 Jul;43(3):237-9. [10563429]
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