Monday, December 21, 2009

This is another reason not to get old ...

Its Christmas break and what do I do? Research.
I'm a nerd.
Page 76: This is a Research Project. Find an encyclopedia, open to a random page, close your eyes and point, write down the subject you have chosen, research it and become an expert.

So for any of you who are interested in learning a little fun fact:

Lymphosarcomatosis (Obvious it’s not an easy one. 2 inches up the page was Lymph Nodes, but no, words I can hardly pronounce are way more fun to research).
Lymphosarcomatosis --> a condition characterized by the presence of multiple lesions of lymposarcoma.
Let’s break it down:
Lymph: the interstitial fluid in between cells of human body
Sarcoma: cancer of connective tissue
Suffix “osis”: normally means a disease or chronic condition.

So I’m concluding that lymphosarcomatosis is a disease in which one has cancer in the interstitial fluid of the cells in their connective tissue. But since I must become an EXPERT, I’ll back track and try to find more info….

Lymposarcoma is a diseased (malignant) lymphoid tissue. Lymphoid tissues are located all around the body; in bone marrow, surrounding arteries, between membranes lining the large and small intestines and respiratory system. Basically these tissues hold cells in them that support a lot of different functions; mainly white blood cells that support the immune response system. There are macrophages and lymphocytes that eliminate dangerous invaders and kick start the body’s response system to protect against invaders. When I say invader I mean any sort of harmful cell or pathogen that has entered the body, like a harmful bacteria or virus.
Now my research on this subject is limited to the encyclopedia I used, dictionaries, and the internet, because I left all my medical textbooks at school. And unfortunately the internet isn't going into much depth on lymposarcoma and lymphosarcomatosis. But from what I've just said, I can conclude that lymphosarcomatosis is just one form of lymphoma. Which means that there is a a tumor in the lymphoid tissue. This tumor is malignant. Which means it’s cancerous and spreading aggressively. There are many different types of lymphoma diseases and cancers, the most popular of which is Hodgkin's disease, you may have heard of it.

The thing with lymphosarcomatosis is that there are MULTIPLE diseased areas of the lymphoid tissue, most likely because the cancer has already spread. So when we speak of lymphosarcomatosis, we're not talking about the beginning stages of the’s already worked its magic and spread to multiple areas.
Obviously you can see how if your lymphoid tissue is diseased, it doesn’t function properly, and thus your body cannot protect itself from invading pathogens because you are not forming and using white blood cells properly, and so- your body is weak and can't fight off sicknesses. So the sickness makes you sicker.

Like I said, Hodgkin’s disease is just one type of lymphoma. There are about 16 different types, classified as aggressive or not. The non-aggressive ones actually allow a person to live a long life and not necessarily need treatment. Whereas the aggressive ones cause rapid deterioration and death. What’s odd is the aggressive forms respond better to treatment and have a chance at a cure. Whereas the non-aggressive ones do not respond to treatment and will be a chronic life-long problem.

Lymphomas make up 5.3% of all cancers in the United States.
From 1999-2005 there was a 5-year survival rate of 69.9%.
The median age for death of lymphoma is about 75.
The median age for diagnosis of lymphoma is about 65.

Anyway, its vacation, and I’m tired of learning.
If you read this whole thing, I congratulate you. Anytime you feel an urge to learn, research something stupid, talk medicine and health, then you know you can come talk to me =) Clearly I’m always down for this sort of stuff.

I hope that none of you have lymphosarcomatosis and that my research on it has enlightened you. Unfortunately it has most likely confused you, or reinforced the fact that you don't want to get old becuase cancer sucks.

If anybody has a question about lymposarcomatosis or lymphoma, refer them to me. I am now an expert.

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