Castleman disease is an illness that involves your lymph nodes and other immune-cell structures in your body. It can develop in a localized or more widespread form.
Castleman disease is classified as a lymphoproliferative disorder. This indicates that it involves an abnormal overgrowth or proliferation of your lymphatic cells.
Even though Castleman disease is not looked at as a cancer, it is in many ways like lymphomas or cancers of your lymphatic system. In fact, many people with this disease go on to develop lymphomas.
Castleman disease is known also by other names. It was previously called Castlemans disease. It is also called giant lymph node hyperplasia and angiofollicular lymph node hyperplasia.
The disease gets its name from Dr. Benjamin Castleman. He first described this disease in 1956.
Little is known about the incidence of Castleman disease except that it is rare. It affects both men and women, as well as adults and children. Castleman disease can occur at any age.
There are two basic types of Castleman disease. They are unicentric and multicentric Castleman disease. The effect of these two types of the disorder on people is vastly different.
Unicentric Castleman disease is the localized form of the disease. This means that it affects only one lymph node.
Most of the people with unicentric Castleman disease experience no effects. Usually, the disease is present in your abdomen or chest. When you are affected, you may experience:
Anemia that may show up in a blood test
A feeling of pressure or fullness in your abdomen or chest that may cause you problems in eating or breathing
Multicentric Castleman disease is much more serious. You will usually have systemic effects from it. Some of these are:
Malaise (general feeling of discomfort)
Enlarged spleen or liver
Fatigue or weakness from anemia
Nerve damage in your feet and hands that develops in weakness or numbness (peripheral neuropathy)
Enlargement of you peripheral lymph nodes, typically around your groin, underarm, collarbone and neck areas.
Castleman disease and/or complications resulting from or along with it may be why you or a loved one is unable to work. This disease may be the cause of your disability.
If this is true, you or your loved one may need help. You may need financial assistance.
Have you or your loved one applied for Social Security disability benefits from the Social Security Administration because of the disability caused by Castleman disease and/or complications resulting from or along with it? Were you or your loved one denied?
If you or your loved one plans to appeal the denial by the Social Security Administration, remember this. People who are represented by a skilled disability attorney like the one at Disability Case Review are approved more often than those without a lawyer.