Splenomegaly

Common Name(s)

Splenomegaly

Splenomegaly is a condition in which an individual’s spleen is larger than normal. The spleen is an organ located in the left upper abdomen that filters red blood cells and helps protect the body against certain types of infections. An enlarged spleen is generally caused by infection, blood diseases, liver disease, or cancer. People at the highest risk of experiencing splenomegaly are those who have an active infection, have a metabolic disorder affecting the spleen or liver, or are exposed to malaria. The spleen of an affected individual may be felt by palpation during a physical examination. After splenomegaly is diagnosed, medical imaging and blood tests are often performed to help determine the cause and direct any treatment.

Individuals affected by splenomegaly may experience abdominal pain on the upper left side of the abdomen, hiccups, and difficulty eating large meals. Other symptoms include fatigue, more frequent bleeding, and repeated infections. Individuals with splenomegaly will often also have anemia, or a low number of circulating red blood cells. When the spleen is enlarged, healthy red blood cells are filtered in addition to old red blood cells. This decreases the number of healthy red blood cells in the bloodstream. If the spleen becomes too large, parts of the spleen may not receive enough blood supply and can be damaged. Complications of splenomegaly include severe infection or a ruptured spleen, which can be fatal.

For individuals with an enlarged spleen, physical activity should be avoided to prevent trauma that could lead to rupture. Treatment of splenomegaly will vary based on the cause. Antibiotics are used to treat any ongoing infections or to help prevent additional infections. In severe cases, part or all of the spleen may be surgically removed (splenectomy). If you or your child has been diagnosed with splenomegaly, talk to your doctor about the most appropriate treatment options.

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Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Splenomegaly" for support, advocacy or research.

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General Support Organizations

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Scientific Literature

Articles from the PubMed Database

Research articles describe the outcome of a single study. They are the published results of original research.
The terms "Splenomegaly" returned 201 free, full-text research articles on human participants. First 3 results:

FOXP3+ Regulatory T Cells in Hepatic Fibrosis and Splenomegaly Caused by Schistosoma japonicum: The Spleen May Be a Major Source of Tregs in Subjects with Splenomegaly.
 

Author(s): Audrey Romano, Xunya Hou, Mathieu Sertorio, Hélia Dessein, Sandrine Cabantous, Pablo Oliveira, Jun Li, Sandrine Oyegue, Violaine Arnaud, Xinsong Luo, Martine Chavanieu, Odette Mariani, Xavier Sastre, Anne-Marie Dombey, Hongbin He, Yuesheng Li, Alain Dessein

Journal:

 

Schistosoma eggs cause chronic liver inflammation and a complex disease characterized by hepatic fibrosis (HF) and splenomegaly (SplM). FOXP3+ Tregs could regulate inflammation, but it is unclear where these cells are produced and what roles they play in human schistosomiasis. We ...

Last Updated: 6 Jan 2016

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Influence of Plasmodium gametocyte carriage on the prevalence of fever, splenomegaly and cardiovascular parameters in children less than 15 years in the Mount Cameroon area: cross sectional study.
 

Author(s): Irene Ule Ngole Sumbele, Orelien S Mtopi Bopda, Helen Kuokuo Kimbi, Teh Rene Ning, Theresa Nkuo-Akenji

Journal:

 

Cardiovascular parameters can be impaired by repeated infections with P. falciparum. This study aimed at investigating the influence of gametocyte carriage on; the prevalence of fever and splenomegaly, blood pressure, heart rate and haematological indices in children <15 years, in ...

Last Updated: 27 Nov 2015

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An unusual indication for splenectomy in hairy cell leukaemia: a report of three cases with persistent splenomegaly after chemoimmunotherapy.
 

Author(s): Nadav Sarid, Humayun N Ahmad, Andrew Wotherspoon, Claire E Dearden, Monica Else, Daniel Catovsky

Journal: Br. J. Haematol.. 2015 Dec;171(5):784-7.

 

We describe three cases of relapsed hairy cell leukaemia (HCL) treated with pentostatin plus rituximab. All three achieved bone marrow complete remission but had persistent splenomegaly and hypersplenism. Because of the clinical uncertainty of its significance, they were all splenectomized. ...

Last Updated: 15 Jan 2016

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Reviews from the PubMed Database

Review articles summarize what is currently known about a disease. They discuss research previously published by others.
The terms "Splenomegaly" returned 9 free, full-text review articles on human participants. First 3 results:

The hyper-reactive malarial splenomegaly: a systematic review of the literature.
 

Author(s): Stefania Leoni, Dora Buonfrate, Andrea Angheben, Federico Gobbi, Zeno Bisoffi

Journal:

 

The hyper-reactive malarial splenomegaly syndrome (HMS) is a leading cause of massive splenomegaly in malaria-endemic countries. HMS is caused by a chronic antigenic stimulation derived from the malaria parasite. Classic Fakunle's major criteria for case definition are: persistent ...

Last Updated: 20 May 2015

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Low-dose splenic irradiation in symptomatic congestive splenomegaly: report of five cases with literature data.
 

Author(s): Frank Bruns, Michael Bremer, Arne Dettmer, Stefan Janssen

Journal:

 

To show effectiveness of low-dose splenic irradiation in symptomatic congestive splenomegaly.

Last Updated: 9 Apr 2014

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A huge low-grade fibromyxoid sarcoma of small bowel mesentery simulating hyper immune splenomegaly syndrome: a case report and review of literature.
 

Author(s): O I Alatise, O A Oke, O O Olaofe, G O Omoniyi-Esan, A R K Adesunkanmi

Journal: Afr Health Sci. 2013 Sep;13(3):736-40.

 

Low-grade fibromyxoid sarcoma (LGFMS) is a rare non epithelial tumour. It usually arises from the smooth muscles of the extremities. It is, however, occasionally reported to arise from other regions of the body.

Last Updated: 19 Nov 2013

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Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

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Clinical Trial Information This information is provided by ClinicalTrials.gov

A Study of the Efficacy and Safety of Oral Rigosertib in Patients With Myelofibrosis (MF) and Anemia
 

Status: Not yet recruiting

Condition Summary: Leukemia; Myelofibrosis; Anemia; Splenomegaly

 

Last Updated: 20 May 2016

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The Use of Point-of-Care Ultrasound in the Diagnosis of Acute Infectious Mononucleosis in the Emergency Department
 

Status: Not yet recruiting

Condition Summary: Infectious Mononucleosis; Splenomegaly

 

Last Updated: 21 Jul 2015

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CINC424A2X01B Rollover Protocol
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Splenomegaly

 

Last Updated: 25 Apr 2016

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