Lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system.Your lymphatic system is made up of a type of white blood cell.This is called a lymphocyte. It is located in your lymph nodes, spleen, tonsils and bone marrow (where blood cells are manufactured). The lymphatic system helps your body fight infection and disease.
There are two main types of lymphoma:
There are many types of treatment for lymphoma. Your treatment choices depend on three main things:
You should ask the following questions when you are making a decision about your treatment:
Together, you and your health care team will make a choice about which treatment (or treatments) is best for you.You should talk with your doctor, nurse, and other members of your health care team.You may ask a lot of questions about your treatment choices before making a choice.
This treatment increases your body's natural ability to fight cancer. It does this by giving a boost to your immune system.There are several kinds of biologic therapy:
This treatment uses drugs to kill cancer cells and reduce the size of cancer tumors. Chemotherapy drugs may also affect healthy cells and cause side effects like hair loss or mouth sores.There are many types of chemotherapy drugs. Many drugs are often used together for chemotherapy.Radiation Therapy
This treatment uses radiation (high energy x-rays) to kill cancer cells.The treatment often only takes place in the part of your body where the lymphoma is located.Transplants
Sometimes high doses of chemotherapy destroy the lymphoma cells and your bone marrow, which is the "factory" for blood cells. To help your bone marrow make new healthy blood cells, some stem cells (immature cells that will grow up into red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets) may be taken with a special machine before chemotherapy is given.
These cells are then transplanted (put back) into the body. These transplanted cells will then find their way to the bone marrow and restore it, so that it can build healthy new blood cells.
There are two types of transplants:
This means that you do not have to get any active treatment now. But, you may need to get treatments later, if tests show that your cancer is growing. Watchful waiting is usually recommended only for people with slow-growing lymphomas.Clinical Trials
These are research studies that help doctors learn more about lymphoma treatment.They can also help people with cancer, because it allows them to receive the treatment. Often, clinical trials are the only way patients can receive new treatments, which are not otherwise available.
Clinical trials can help doctors learn about:
While clinical trials can provide many benefits, they can also be harmful for some patients.You should speak with your doctor, nurse, or health care team about clinical trials.Top of Page