Swollen Lymph Nodes

  • Medical Author:
    Siamak N. Nabili, MD, MPH

    Dr. Nabili received his undergraduate degree from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), majoring in chemistry and biochemistry. He then completed his graduate degree at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). His graduate training included a specialized fellowship in public health where his research focused on environmental health and health-care delivery and management.

  • Medical Author: Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

What are lymph nodes?

  • Lymph nodes are an important component of the body's immune system and help in fighting infections. Infections caused by swollen lymph nodes is referred to as lymphadenitis.
  • Lymph nodes (sometimes called lymph glands) are small, soft, round or oval structures that are found throughout the body and are connected to each other in chain-like (lymphatic chains) fashion by channels similar to blood vessels. Each individual lymph node is covered by a capsule made up of connective tissue.
  • Lymph is a watery fluid that circulates within the lymphatic vessels. Lymph nodes are found near these vessels.
  • Within the capsule, lymph nodes contain certain kinds of immune cells. These cells are mainly lymphocytes, which produce proteins that capture and fight viruses and other microbes, and macrophages, which destroy and remove the captured material. Continue Reading
Reviewed on 4/14/2016
References
REFERENCE:

MedscapeReference.com. Lymphadenitis.

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