Symptoms of Hodgkin lymphoma

The signs or symptoms of Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) may vary depending on the location of the cancer in the body. Other health conditions can cause the same symptoms as HL.

The most common symptom of HL is swollen lymph nodes in the neck, underarm, groin or chest. The swollen lymph nodes are usually painless, but sometimes areas of diseased lymph nodes will become painful after you drink alcohol.

Other common symptoms of HL are:

  • fever
  • night sweats
  • weight loss
  • itchy skin
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing

B symptoms

Some symptoms of HL are generalized, which means they affect the whole body. These are called B symptoms or systemic symptoms. They are:

  • Fever that has no obvious cause. Your temperature may be high for several days, or it may switch between normal and high for days or weeks.
  • Night sweats are so heavy your bedding or clothes are wet and need to be changed.
  • Unexplained weight loss of at least 10% of your body weight over 6 months.

Expert review and references

  • American Cancer Society. What is Hodgkin Lymphoma . 2018: Monday, January 14, 2019.
  • American Cancer Society. Signs and Symptoms of Hodgkin Lymphoma . 2018:
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology. Lymphoma - Hodgkin . 2017.
  • Bradley W Lash. Hodgkin Lymphoma. 2015:
  • Cancer Research UK. About Hodgkin lymphoma . 2018.
  • Lash, Bradley W. Medscape Reference: Hodgkin Lymphoma Overview . 2018: Monday, January 14, 2019.
  • National Cancer Institute. Adult Hodgkin Lymphoma Treatment (PDQ®) Patient Version . 2018.
  • National Cancer Institute. Adult Hodgkin Lymphoma Treatment (PDQ®) Health Professional Version . 2018.
  • Sasse S, Engert A . Hodgkin lymphoma. Marcus R, Sweetenham JW, Williams ME (eds.). Lymphoma: Pathology, Diagnosis, and Treatment. 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press; 2014: 5: 61-86.