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A 41-year-old member asked:

can a blood test detect a lymphatic diseases?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Joseph Woods
Pathology 28 years experience
Need other tests.: Blood tests might show signs pointing to lymphoma, like many lymphocytes, and lymphoblasts, but other signs are seen, like lymphadenopathy (enlarged lymph nodes). Also, there are many kinds of lymphomas, like follicular, and mantle cell, and they need tests like biopsy and flow cytometry to distinguish them, so other tests are needed.
Dr. Joseph Woods
Pathology 28 years experience
No, may need biopsy.: A blood test can detect some lymphomas with high lymphocyte peripheral blood count, but fine needle aspiration of some lymph nodes, and/or a lymph node biopsy may be needed. This can be used to distinguish between types of lymphoma, like hodgkin's vs. Non-hodgkin's, mantle cell vs. B-cell, t-cell, infection, cancers, etc.. Specific markers for b and t cells are also used.

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A 39-year-old member asked:

Does a blood test detect lymphatic diseases like problems with lymphatic flow?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Barbara Stark Baxter
Allergy and Immunology 42 years experience
Usually mechanical: The commonest reasons for interruption of lymphatic flow are surgical, like lymph node removal for breast cancer. When the lymph nodes are cut out of the underarm area, the lymph channels are cut with them, leaving the arm on that side vulnerable to "lymphedema." this is why women do not have blood drawn on the side where they had a mastectomy. There is no blood test for this.

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Last updated Jun 5, 2016

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