In response to even the smallest inflammation or penetration of foreign agents, the body begins to react sharply, including all protective mechanisms. One of the most popular, most commonly used defense mechanisms is the lymphatic system and its nodes. The latter can significantly increase in size, indicating the development of lymphadenitis. So what is lymphadenitis? Disease or defensive reaction of the body?
Lymphadenitis: Main Symptoms
According to the medical dictionary, lymphadenitis is defined as inflammation of the lymph nodes, their increase as a result of the penetration of microbial agents into the lymphatic system. The most common cause of lymphadenitis are bacteria: staphylococci, streptococci, rarely viruses. In addition, the disease has the most typical locations - the submandibular, axillary space.
Lymphadenitis can be called an independent disease, but in this form it is extremely rare, in individuals with immunodeficiencies or cancer. Most often, lymphadenitis is defined as a regular reaction of the immune system to the penetration of pathogens. It can be said that the lymph nodes are a kind of a checkpoint on the principle of "one's / someone else's". And as soon as "alien - harmful microorganisms" penetrate, a localized inflammatory reaction begins, with the aim of destroying the pathogen and preventing it from penetrating further. As a result, the lymph nodes are enlarged, the corresponding symptoms appear.
The main complaints can be divided into 2 main groups - general, which will be associated with the cause of inflammation of the lymph nodes, local, which will directly concern the enlarged lymph nodes. So, in the general group can be attributed to the deterioration of overall health, fever, etc. Local symptoms can be called a direct increase in lymph nodes in the submandibular region - submandibular lymphadenitis, or in the armpit - axillary lymphadenitis, the formation of edema, local temperature increase (skin in the area of edema is hot), redness. In some cases, enlarged lymph nodes restrict movement, may cause pain.
It is on the localization of lymphadenitis, the doctor may suggest the location of the inflammation. If we are talking about submandibular lymphadenitis, the focus must be sought in the oral cavity, ENT organs, and inflammation can be one-sided, which narrows the range of the search. Swollen lymph nodes can be when teething "wisdom". Inflammation of the axillary lymph nodes may indicate a wider list of diseases, but the focus of the pathology will be located in close proximity to the lymph node.
How to treat lymphadenitis?
At the initial stage of manifestations, treatment can be carried out at home, but only after consulting with a specialist. Quite often, specific treatment of lymphadenitis does not require, it is necessary to find a nidus of inflammation and stop it. Only after this the defense reaction will pass on its own, and the lymph nodes return to their original size.
Having determined the cause of lymphadenitis, even before obtaining histological results, broad-spectrum antibiotics are prescribed - the drugs of choice, most often it is a penicillin series. If the reason lies in the virus - antiviral drugs. As soon as the sensitivity of pathogens to antibiotics is determined, medications of a narrow, targeted spectrum of action are prescribed.
In addition to antibiotic therapy, drugs are prescribed for symptomatic treatment, which will be aimed at improving the patient's well-being. In any regimen of therapy it is difficult to do without fortifying drugs - vitamins, minerals, immunostimulants, etc.
Only in complex cases, when lymphadenitis becomes purulent or caused by atypical microorganisms, can surgical intervention be used to remove the affected lymph nodes.
Physiotherapeutic treatment - electrophoresis, ultrasound, current therapy, etc. - has positively recommended itself. It is strictly forbidden to use heat treatment - to warm the lymph nodes with various compresses, since heat additionally activates the processes of inflammation.
In any case, the inflammation of the lymph nodes is a serious signal of a malfunction in the body. And neglect of the process can become a threat to the health and even the life of the patient, for example, the transition of inflammation into purulent forms and the formation of thrombophlebitis, the spread of a purulent process in the neck space with the subsequent formation of abscesses and phlegmon. In accordance with this, when symptoms of lymphadenitis appear, timely consultation with a specialist, examination and appointment of adequate treatment is necessary.