Burkitt’s Lymphoma

Burkitt's-Lymphoma

Burkitt’s lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system, particularly B lymphocytes found in the germinal center.

Burkitt’s lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system, particularly B lymphocytes found in the germinal center.

Currently Burkitt’s lymphoma can be divided into three main clinical variants: the endemic, the sporadic, and the immunodeficiency-associated variants.

The endemic variant most commonly occurs children living in malaria endemic regions of the world. Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) infection is found in nearly all patients.

The sporadic type of Burkitt lymphoma is the most common variant found in places where malaria is not holoendemic. The tumor cells have a similar appearance to the cancer cells of classical endemic Burkitt lymphoma. Sporadic lymphomas are rarely associated with the Epstein–Barr virus.
The jaw is less commonly involved, compared to the endemic variant. The ileocecal region is the common site of involvement.

Immunodeficiency-associated Burkitt lymphoma is usually associated with HIV infection or occurs in the setting of post-transplant patients who are taking immunosuppressive drugs.

The symptoms of Burkitt lymphoma depend on the type.

The endemic (African) variant usually starts as tumors of the jaw or other facial bones. It also can affect the gastrointestinal tract, ovaries, and breasts and can spread to the central nervous system, causing nerve damage, weakness, and paralysis.

The types sporadic and immunodeficiency-associated — usually start in the bowel and form a bulky tumor mass in the abdomen, often with massive involvement of the liver, spleen, and bone marrow. These variants also can start in the ovaries, testes, or other organs, and spread to the brain and spinal fluid.

Other symptoms associated with Burkitt lymphoma include:

Loss of appetite
Weight loss
Fatigue
Night sweats
Unexplained fever

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