My struggle with lymphoma fears, advice?
I am a 14 year old boy and ever since the end of August my entire life has revolved around one thing, lymphoma.
My anxiety story began in May when I had my first full-on panic attack. My chest hurt, couldn't breathe, and felt dizzy. I begged my father to take me to the emergency room, but to no avail. I quickly felt better the next morning after a rough night's sleep. About a month went by and on my last day of vacation in Florida, it happened again. All of the same symptoms (chest pain, dizziness, and lack of breath) returned once more. This was the end of the cardiac chapter of my anxiety. I have always had a habit of searching my symptoms on the internet and scaring myself to death.
The next phase of my anxiety began in early August when a lump grew right behind my ear (where the end of glasses would rest). I hadn't noticed it until I rubbed behind my ear one day. I immediately got on the internet and started searching what it might be. After some research I came to a conclusion, I had a cancerous tumor and I was going to die soon. I asked my mother to make me an appointment to see a doctor. The next day at my appointment I had the doctor feel the lump and she said it was a swollen lymph gland, most likely due to allergies. This was the end of my tumor worries.
The third and current phase of my health anxiety that has been haunting me for almost 5 months now is lymphoma worries. After finding the lump by my ear I grew suspicious of my own body like I never have before. I was feeling around every part of my body and I found lymph nodes on each side of my neck, groin, and armpits. I never would've known what they were if it wasn't for me spending my day on the internet searching about lymphoma and lymph nodes. I asked my mom to take me back to the doctor as a result of the lymph nodes. About a week after the appointment was scheduled, we went back to the doctor (same office, different doctor- primary doctor that I've went to my entire life). He felt all of my lymph nodes and said that he didn't think I had lymphoma because I had no symptoms and all my lymph nodes were movable and not rock hard. My mom told the doctor about my anxiety so he sent me to get a CBC, which came back normal. Although everything pointed away from cancer, It just wouldn't leave my mind.
I just recently got over a cough that lasted for about 5 weeks. The cough was productive with light and dark green phlegm.
To this day I have constantly thought about lymphoma and how doctors won't catch it in time. The only thing that gets my mind off of this is playing hockey, especially now because recently I've started to constantly think about death and how unfair it is. I can't live like this anymore.
Advice is welcome
- Anonymous9 years agoFavorite Answer
Be at peace within. You don't have lymphoma and the odds on getting it are next to nothing. Our lymph nodes swell all the time to help battle bacteria, viruses, and conditions requiring immune response. It's totally normal for them to swell. They are doing their job fine in you. In order for a person to get lymphoma requires the person to be exposed to significant amounts of certain industrial toxins basically. Some toxins can cause DNA changes to immune cells. Basic prevention like washing fruits and vege.s well before eating, and using proper precautions when dealing with chemicals prevent the vast majority of people from getting lymphomas. So you are going to have to come up with something else to worry about, and I know you will :(( Just take good care of your health and you won't need to worry about getting sick. And when you do get sick, see a doctor if necessary, but the odds on it being serious is going to be quite low. Make sure you exercise, eat healthy and get quality sleep to help your brain de-stress. Have a fun hobby or two. Oh yeah, get good grades in school, and figure out what career you will enjoy and work towards that goal. Peace ! Chip