Lymphoma is a type of cancer that affects the lymph nodes and is known as cancer of the lymphoid tissue. We know two categories of lymphomas: Hodgkin’s lymphoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
We are going to talk about a rare type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, mantle cell lymphoma. This type of cancer can be defined as an enlargement of the population of malignant lymphoid cells, happening in the area of the lymph nodes and tissues. These cells have an unusual structure being considered as mutant cells because of their lack of development. Maturing improperly these cells become cancerous.
The lymphatic system helps the body to fight against infections or foreign particles. When the white cells are mature they seek for infections through the body. There are two types of white cells in the lymphatic system, the B cells and the T cells. Once an infection is found by the B cells, the second type of white cells, the T ones come to destroy it. This is how the immune system works.
Lymphomas are cancerous cells from the lymphatic system. The non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas that occur in the lymphatic system include follicular lymphomas, Burkitt’s lymphomas which are non-cleaved lymphomas, MALT lymphomas which are lymphomas from the marginal sides of the tissues, small and large cell lymphomas, and the subject of discussion, the mantle cell lymphomas (MCL).
The classification of the mantle cell lymphomas separates them into three categories: mantle zone type MCL cells, nodular type and immature (blastic) type. Diagnoses, in most of the cases, refer to mixed mantle or nodular type MCL.
The mantle cell lymphoma is a great concern, many specialists debating over this subject. Some consider it intermediate while others say that mantle cell lymphoma is a low-grade cancer because of its slow development. Both of these sides come with arguments based on studies and both sides are right. Patients suffering of blastic type MCL have less chances of survival comparing to the other MCL patients, because in these cases cancer spreads faster.
Persons suffering of mantle cell lymphoma are rarely under 50 and women represent a little more than a quarter in the patients number.
It’s not easy to say if a patient suffers of mantle cell lymphoma. Some believe that an immunologic test is required for a correct diagnosis.
Treatment is prescript by specialists, because each case is unique and is related to many factors like age, sex and especially stage of disease.
By Groshan Fabiola