Medical Definition of Diffuse large B cell lymphoma

Reviewed on 6/3/2021

Diffuse large B cell lymphoma: a type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a cancer of the cells that make up the immune system. Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma is one of the most common types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The term "B-cell" refers to a specific type of white blood cell, the B-lymphocyte. The terms "diffuse" and "large cell" are used to describe the appearance of the cancer cells under the microscope. The incidence of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma increases with age. Symptoms can include swollen, painless lymph nodes anywhere in the body, fever, weight loss, night sweats, weakness, and tiredness. DLBCL is usually an aggressive tumor, and the cause is poorly understood. Having a weakened immune system is a risk factor for the development of DLBCL.

Also referred to as DLBCL or DLBL.

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References
Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.