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What does an enlarged lymph node behind the knees indicate?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 2307 Questions
I went and had a ultra sound and it was discovered I had a lymph node behind the knee, which was larger than it should be, then a CT scan, now I am having a FNA biopsy, I have also had several tests done, one for lymph nodes in my neck, which are enlarged and also for poor liver function. What are my chances of it being cancer? My father was one of 11 kids in his family, and each one died from cancer. I am a bit concerned. I am 64 yrs old Thank you XXXX.
Posted Sun, 16 Feb 2014 in Cancer
Answered by Dr. Prasad 1 hour later
Brief Answer: Possibility unclear.... Detailed Answer: DearXXXX, There are no robust scientific statistical studies to rate chances of cancer from an enlarged lymph node. I hope you do not suffer from night sweats, on and off fever, low appetite and unwanted weight loss. You mentioned you had some test for neck lymph node. May I know what those tests were and its results? Though the chances cannot be defined yet, since it's a single enlarged lymph node the possibility of high grade fast growing cancer is less likely. So do not be concerned. Wait for the FNA biopsy result. I hope this reassures you. Feel free to write back and ask for clarifications. Regards
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Follow-up: What does an enlarged lymph node behind the knees indicate? 13 minutes later
The tests I had for my neck were an ultra sound, the results come back on a disc, I am not sure how it works. My local GP is a bit vague, I live on an Island and do not have the choice of Dr's. Yes I do suffer badly with night sweats, my husband has to sleep in the spare room as I have the fan on full. on and off fever also, but not weight loss. I guess maybe I am thinking to fast and a bit frightened. Can you tell me how long the blood tests take for ca cells to come back? I am a registered nurse (or was) so I have some knowledge, but when it comes to your own body, it is very scary. Thank you XXXX
Answered by Dr. Prasad 1 hour later
Brief Answer: The progress depend on the cancer cells... Detailed Answer: The progress, prognosis and chances of recurrence are graded based on the type of cancer cells. As you are part of healthcare system, you should be aware that there are low grade cancers of blood cells as well as high grade cancers. Those that are low grade ones are more benign and less aggressive than high grade ones. I assume you would have a low grade ones if at all this is cancer related especially if there are no plenty of lymph nodes that are enlarged. Low grade cancer cells can be treated with chemotherapy +/- radiotherapy and cancer cells can remain in remission for up to 10 - 15 years. The process can be repeated if needed. You can proceed to consult an oncologist or a hematologist who will be aware of the treatment if FNA biopsy result is concerning. Alternatively you may request for an excision biopsy following FNAC. Hope this answers your question.
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