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Ultimate lymph question
Mar 9, 2002

I guess lymph node questions would be very easily settled if someone created a web page where the millions of us out here with lymph node questions could look at diagrams and photos depicting normal and abnormal situations. So far, I am one of the millions out here who has found like 20 different diagrams which don't look alike: some depict 3 nodes behind the ear, some depict one. Some depict lymph nodes along the muscle of the neck, others just depict 3 nodes forming a triangle. I can only guess the burden of answering the same question a billion times, but if you could provide a definite internet reference (or author - book, with images and examples) to this matter, this would be the ultimate lymph answer to the ultimate lymph question.

Response from Dr. Feinberg

I don't know of any absolutely definitive text or illustrations that are what you are requesting. The problem is that there are hindreds and hundreds of lymph nodes in the body, and we are not all exactly alike-- so some people may have 32 nodes in an armpit, where others may have 27. The locations and numbers of nodes follow a general pattern but may not be exactly the same for everyone. And most of the body's lymph nodes are not accessible to the examining physician-- they are too deep or hidden behind other structures.

The real point here is NOT TO GET HUNG UP ABOUT LYMPH NODES, as I have tried many times to explain to different people posting these questions. Lymph node enlargement is a generalized reaction of the body to a host of different disease processes. If you think you may have HIV, then get tested. It's really as simple as that. Second-guessing HIV test results by fooling around with lymph nodes is a waste of time.


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