What Does Non Pathologically Enlarged Mean?


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Abi Ainscough answered
The word pathological is defined as meaning "of disease", therefore non-pathological is a term used to describe something that is not related to disease. As a result, non-pathologically enlarged means that, for example, a part of the body has become enlarged, but not because of a disease.

The terms pathologically enlarged or non-pathologically enlarged are most commonly heard in reference to enlarged lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are an important part of the immune system as they contain lymphocytes, which help defend and protect our bodies against disease. These can become enlarged for no apparent reason, and in this case, there is no risk posed by the enlarged lymph node. However, they can also become pathologically enlarged due to cancer, which of course can be fatal.

• Non-pathologically enlarged lymph nodes

Non-pathologically enlarged lymph nodes are not cancerous. In many cases, the enlargement or swelling of a lymph node is due to infection, and should not cause any serious or permanent damage or illness within the body. Despite this, many people fear the worst, especially if children experience an enlarged lymph node. As a general rule, lymph nodes which are enlarged to over one centimeter should be operated upon. However, before panicking, you should check with your doctor or surgeon, who will take any necessary action.

• Pathologically enlarged lymph nodes

A surgeon will remove a section of the enlarged lymph node in order to determine whether or not the lymph node is cancerous. Some of the most common sites for cancerous lymph nodes are in the groin area, neck and armpits, as these are the areas with the highest population of lymph nodes. Cancer can affect lymph nodes in a number of ways - cancer can start in the lymph nodes and spread through the body (this is known as lymphoma), or cancer can start in other areas of the body and then affect the lymph nodes.

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