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Lymphoma of the tonsil? Can it be masked by infection?
May 15, 2001

I have an hypertrophic erythematous palatal tonsil for the past 3 months and of course I am HIV positive since 1988.All my labs are good and a biopsy showed no evidence of lymphoma, but my doc says that the concomitant infection (haemophilus influenzae) could cover an underlying lymphoma.Is it correct? What am I supposed to do next?Please help

Response from Dr. Dezube

Your doctor is indeed correct. Occasionally lymphomas can be masked by an infection. The best thing to do is to have your Haemophilus infection treated. This is easily treated by antibiotics. If you symptoms or physical findings persist, then you would need to have a repeat biopsy and perhaps a CT (or MRI) of the neck. The odds are in your favor that you do NOT have lymphoma. Nevertheless, you and your doctor need to maintain a keen eye until your symptoms resolve. Good luck, and please write back if you end up having cancer (I'm praying you don't). BD.


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