Treatments for lymphoma
The treatments you have will depend on the type of lymphoma you have, how far it has spread (its stage) and whether you have symptoms.
We have more detailed information about treatment if you select a type of lymphoma.
These are some of the common treatments. You might have these treatments on their own or in combination.
Watch and wait
Some people with slow-developing blood cancers don’t need treatment straight away – this is called ‘watch and wait’. You’ll be carefully monitored, and will only start treatment if and when it’s needed. Watch and wait doesn’t mean that you can’t be treated. It’s offered when your doctor believes there’s no added benefit to starting treatment straight away.
Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells or stop them from growing. You will normally have chemotherapy through drip into a vein (intravenously).
You may also have radiotherapy. Radiotherapy uses high-energy rays to kill cancer cells in a specific area. The radiotherapy would be aimed at affected lymph nodes or lumps.
Other drug therapies
There are other drug therapies that can be used on their own or with chemotherapy.
Targeted therapies are drugs that work by targeting proteins or genetic changes that cancer cells have, which normal cells don’t have. They are also sometimes called biological therapies or immunotherapy. An example used for non-Hodgkin lymphoma is rituximab.
Steroids are drugs that can make some chemotherapy treatments more effective and help you feel less sick during treatment.
If you have diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, you might also have injections called growth factor injections to encourage your body to make more white blood cells.
Read more specific information about treatments by choosing a type of lymphoma.
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