Glossary of Lymphoma Terms

A glossary of lymphoma-related terms.

ABVD
A chemotherapy regimen commonly used to treat Hodgkin's Disease.  The drugs used are Adriamycin, Bleomycin, Vinblastine, and Dacarbazine.
Absolute Neutrophil Count (ANC):
The total number of neutrophils, a special form of white blood cells in the body.
Acute
Sudden, rapid onset of disease or symptoms.
Adjuvant Therapy
Anticancer drugs or hormones given after surgery and/or radiation to help prevent the cancer from recurring.
Adriamycin
A chemotherapy drug (generic name doxorubicin) commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease and other forms of lymphoma.
Aggressive Lymphoma
A fast growing lymphoma.  It is also known as high-grade lymphoma.  These lymphomas respond well to chemotherapy and radiation treatments.  More on Aggressive non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.
AIDS-related Lymphoma
Certain types of lymphoma may develop in persons whose immune system is weakened by acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).  More information can be found on the AIDS-related lymphoma information page.
Allogeneic Bone Marrow Transplant (Allo BMT)
Bone marrow is taken from another person with a compatible HLA and given to a recipient.
Alopecia
Loss of hair, be it on the head or all over the body. Alopecia is a symptom of many chemotherapy drugs.
Alprazolam
A medication used to treat anxiety or insomnia.
Analgesic
A pain-relieving drug. Common types are aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol®), and ibuprofen (Motrin®).
Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (ALCL)
A cancer of the T-cells.  ALCL is an indolent cancer that can present in the lymphatic system or the skin.  See also the Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma page.
Anemia
A condition caused by a reduction in the amount of red blood cells or hemoglobin. It causes fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, headaches, and irritability. More Information on Blood Counts.
Antibiotic
A drug that kills or reduces the growth of bacterial infection.
Antibody
A protein formed by the body to fight infections. Antibodies bind to antigens (cell markers) on viruses, bacteria, or tumor cells and mark them for destruction by the body’s immune system.
Antiemetic
A drug that reduces or prevents nausea or vomiting. Two effective drugs for chemotherapy-induced nausea are Zofran and Kytril.
Antigen
A cell marker produced by all cell types.  Antigens help the body’s immune system identify cells.  The immune system uses antibodies to bind to the antigens in order to mark the cells for removal.
Apheresis
Collection of peripheral blood cells, especially stem cells, by a device similar to a dialysis machine. Also see the Stem Cell Collection Page.
Aplastic Anemia (AA)
A deficiency of certain types of blood cells caused by poor bone marrow function.
Apoptosis
Programmed cell death.  If a cell’s apoptosis mechanism is switched off, then the cell will not die naturally.  This is one cause of malignant/cancerous conditions.
Autologous Bone Marrow Transplant (Auto BMT)
Bone Marrow is taken from the patient's own body prior to high dose chemotherapy and/or radiation treatment. After treatment, the marrow is injected into the patient to restore the immune system.
Autologous Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplant (Auto PBSCT)
Stem Cells are taken from the patient's own body prior to treatment. After treatment, the stem cells are injected into the patient to restore the immune system.
Axillary Lymph Node
A lymph node found in the underarm region (axilla).
B-cell lymphomas
Non-hodgkin's lymphomas that arise from cancers in B-cells.  See the B-cell lymphoma page for more information.
B cell
A type of lymphocyte (a specific type of white blood cell). B-cells respond to the presence of antigens by dividing and maturing into plasma cells.
B-cell lymphomas
Non-hodgkin's lymphomas that arise from cancers in B-cells.  See the B-cell lymphoma page for more information.
Benign tumor
A noncancerous growth that does not spread to other parts of the body.
Bexxar
A radiolabeled monoclonal antibody used in clinical trials as a treatment for B-cell Non-Hodgkin's LymphomaMore Information.
Biological therapy
Treatment with substances that can stimulate the body's immune system to fight disease more effectively. Also called immunotherapy.
Biopsy
The removal of a sample of tissue followed by microscopic examination by a pathologist to see whether cancer cells are present.
Bleomycin
A chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease.
Blood Cell
A general term describing the three cellular components of blood (white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets), all which are made in the bone marrow.
Blood Count
A routine test to determine the amount of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets in a sample of blood. Often used to determine if the body can withstand another round of chemotherapy ("Are my counts high enough?"). Also called the complete blood count (CBC).
Bone Marrow
The soft, spongy tissue in the center of large bones that produces white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets.
Bone Marrow Aspiration and Biopsy
The removal and analysis of a sample of bone marrow, usually through a needle inserted into the hip bone. A pathologist will examine the sample for normal and possibly abnormal cells.
Bone Marrow Harvest
The removal and collection of bone marrow, usually done prior to a bone marrow transplant, but sometimes done as a preventative measure in case of relapse.
Bone Marrow Suppression
A decrease in the number of blood cells produced; it may be a result of cancer treatment or tumor invasion of bone marrow.
Bone Marrow Transplantation (BMT)
Treatment in which healthy bone marrow replaces bone marrow that has been affected by a disease or by treatment for a disease. Usually the patient receives high dose chemotherapy and possibly radiation to kill cancer. In the process, the patient's ability to fight infection is also damaged. The donated bone marrow is infused into the patient to restore the immune system. The marrow may come from the patient prior to the procedure (autologous BMT) or from a suitable donor (allogeneic BMT). See also the Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Information Page.
Burkitt's lymphoma
A type of Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that most often occurs in young people between the ages of 12 and 30. The disease usually causes a rapidly growing tumor in the abdomen.
Cancer
A general term for diseases that are characterized by uncontrolled, abnormal growth of cells.  Lymphoma is a subset of cancers that originates in the lymph system.
CAT Scan
see Computerized Tomography 
Carcinogen
An agent that causes cancer.
Catheter
A flexible tube inserted into the body to transport fluids into or out of the body.
CBC
Complete blood count - see Blood Count.
Central Nervous System (CNS) Lymphoma
A type of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, which is located primarily in the central nervous system. For more information see the CNS lymphoma page.
Central Venous Catheter
A special thin flexible tube placed in a large vein.  It remains there for as long as it is needed to deliver or withdraw fluids.
Chemotherapy
Treatment with anticancer drugs.
Chromosome
A strand of DNA and related proteins that carries the genes and transmits hereditary information.
Chronic
lasting for a long period of time or marked by frequent recurrence.
Clinical trial
Research conducted with volunteer patients, usually to evaluate a new treatment under strictly controlled conditions. Each trial is designed to answer scientific questions and to find better ways to treat individuals with a specific disease.
Colony-Stimulating Factor (CSF)
A treatment agent used to stimulate the production of certain blood cells in the bone marrow. Agents include granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF)
Combination Chemotherapy
The use of more than one drug to treat cancer.  Some combinations are ABVD (Hodgkin's) or CHOP (NHL).
Compazine (prochlorperazine)
A medication used to treat nausea and vomiting.
Complementary Therapy
Techniques or approaches often used in addition to standard treatment. Examples are diet or meditation.
Computed Tomography
An X-ray procedure that uses a computer to produce detailed 3-dimensional or cross sectional pictures of the body. More information on CAT scans.
Cure
in the case of lymphoma, the term used when there is no sign of disease present in the body and adequate time has passed so that the chances of recurrence are small.
Cutaneous T-cell Lymphoma (CTCL)
A type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that first appears on the skin. Also called mycosis fungoides.
Cytogenetics
identification of abnormal chromosomes in a cellular tissue sample.
Cytology
The study of cells, their origin, structure, function, and pathology.
Cytomegalovirus (CMV)
A type of virus that can cause unapparent infections in healthy individuals but is dangerous to immunosuppressed patients. CMV is a member of the herpes family of viruses. The virus may manifest itself as pneumonia, colitis, or hepatitis.
Dacarbazine
A chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease. Also called DTIC.
Debulking
reducing the size of a tumor often through surgery or through radiation therapy.
Denial
A process of automatically blocking awareness of painful realities, thoughts, or feelings in order to protect oneself from emotional distress.
Diaphragm
The thin muscle below the lungs and heart that separates the chest from the abdomen.
Diuretics
drugs that help the body get rid of excess water and salt.
DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid)
The part of the cell that contains and controls all genetic information.
Doxorubicin
The generic name for Adriamycin, a chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease.
Drug Resistance
The failure of (cancer) cells to respond to drugs (chemotherapy).
Durable Power of Attorney
The legal designation of a person responsible for managing another person's affairs if he/she becomes unable to do so. It can be for all decisions or only for health care decisions (health care proxy).
Dysphagia
Difficulty in swallowing.
Edema
Swelling of a body part caused by an abnormal buildup of fluids.
Empathy
Understanding another person's feelings by remembering or imagining being in a similar situation.
Empowerment
Having the right to make one's own choices and having the ability to act on them.
Epidemiology
The study of the causes, distribution, and control of disease in populations.
Epstein-Barr Virus
A retrovirus that has been associated with the development of and is present in about 50% of the time in Hodgkin's Disease patients. The link between the virus and cancer is still unknown.
Erythema
Redness of the skin.
Erythrocyte
The red blood cell that carries oxygen to the cells and carries carbon dioxide away from them.
Excision
Removal by surgery.
Fatigue
a lack of energy, general tiredness.
Fertility
The ability to have children. Several treatments for lymphoma affect fertility.
Follicle
A cluster of cells.
Gallium Scan
The patient is injected with radioactive gallium and scanned with a detection machine 2-5 days later.  The gallium moves towards sources of inflammation/infection. Detailed information.
Gastrointestinal
having to do with the digestive tract, which includes the mouth, esophagus, stomach, and intestines.
Gene
The part of DNA that is responsible for determining a person's characteristics and that carries information from old cells to new cells.
Gene Therapy
The use of genes to treat cancer and other diseases.
Genome
The complete genetic information of a species.
Gleevec
The new drug Gleevec was approved by the FDA May 10th 2001.  It has been shown to be effective in creating lasting remissions for numerous cancers, including Leukemia and Lymphoma.
Grade
The speed at which a type of Non-Hodgkin's develops. There are three - low grade, intermediate grade, and high grade. The terms aggressive and indolent are now more commonly used, especially by the US National Cancer Institute (NCI).
Graft-Verses-Host (GVH) Disease
A complication that may develop after a bone marrow transplant in which the lymphocytes from the donated bone marrow react against the host's cells.
Granulocyte
A type of white blood cell that fights bacterial infection or foreign substances.  They congregate around, engulf, and destroy the offending object in a process called phagocytosis.  (A granulocyte is also called a neutrophil).
Granulocyte-Colony Stimulating Factor (G-CSF)
A treatment agent used to stimulate the production of granulocytes in the bone marrow. Manufactured by Amgen under the name Neupogen®, it is often given during or after chemotherapy to boost the immune system.
Granulocyte/Macrophage-Colony Stimulating Factor (GM-CSF)
A treatment agent used to stimulate the production of macrophages, granulocytes, and eosinophils in the bone marrow. It is sometimes given to boost the immune system.
Harvesting
removing tissue or cells from a donor and preserving them for transplantation. See also apheresis and bone marrow harvest.
Hematocrit
The number of red blood cells within a sample of blood. More Information.
Hematologist
A doctor who specializes in the treatment of blood diseases.
Hematology
The study of blood, blood-producing organs, and blood disorders. HICKMAN® Catheter: catheter that is inserted into a large vein near the heart - used for delivery of medications and transfusions. HICKMAN is a registered trademark of C.R. Bard, Inc. and its related company, BCR, Inc.
HICKMAN® Catheter
Catheter that is inserted into a large vein near the heart - used for delivery of medications and transfusions. HICKMAN is a registered trademark of C.R. Bard, Inc. and its related company, BCR, Inc.
High Grade
A grade of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma denoting fast growth.
Histiocytic lymphoma
The old Rappaport classification for the form of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma now known as large cell lymphoma.
Hodgkin's Disease
A malignant disorder of lymph tissue (lymphoma) that occurs mostly in individuals between the ages of 15 and 35. If detected early, it has a high remission rate. It is characterized by the presence of Reed-Sternberg cells. For more information see the Hodgkin's Disease Page.
Hospice
A program designed for caring for terminally ill patients and their families.
HLA
see Human Leukocyte Antigen
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
The virus that causes AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome).
Human Leukocyte Antigens (HLA)
A set of 6 antigens used to match a blood or bone marrow donor to a recipient. These antigens appear on white blood cells as well as cells of almost all other tissues and are analogous to red blood cell antigens (type A, B, O, etc.) By typing for HLA antigens, donors and recipients of white blood cells, platelets, and organs can be matched to ensure good performance and survival of transfused and transplanted cells.
Hyperalimentation
Nutritional support given through a vein.
Immune System
The system within the body that recognizes and fights foreign cells and disease.
Immunophenotyping
Determining what kind of surface molecules are present on cells. Used by pathologists to determine the exact type of lymphoma from a tissue sample.
Immunosuppressant
A or other factor that prevents the immune system from reacting to foreign substances and fighting disease.
Immunotherapy
Treatment of disease by inducing, enhancing, or suppressing an immune response. Comprehensive Information.
Indolent
Slow growing. Treatment of indolent lymphomas is dependent on the specific type and stage although watch and wait is not uncommon when the disease is not problematic. More information on indolent lymphoma.
Informed Consent
legally required procedure to ensure that a patient knows about the potential risks and benefits of a treatment before it is started.
Infusion
Administration of fluids or medications into the blood through the veins.
Inguinal
The pubic/groin region
Injection
use of a syringe and needle to deliver medications to the body (also called a "shot").
Interferon
A natural substance produced by the body in response to a virus. Interferons can stimulate the immune system to fight the growth of cancer.
Interleukin
A natural hormone-like substance produced by the body that activates the growth of certain types of lymphocytes.
Intermediate Grade
A grade of Non-Hodgkin's denoting usually moderate growth. NHL types that are intermediate grade are large cell follicular, mixed cell diffuse, large cell diffuse and immunoblastic diffuse. NCI is now classifying lymphomas as Indolent or Aggressive.
Intra-arterial (IA)
Into an artery.
Intralesional (IL)
into the cancerous area in the skin.
Intramuscular (IM)
Into the muscle.
Intrathecal (IT)
Into the spinal fluid.
Intravenous (IV)
Within, or administered into, a vein.
Jaundice
A yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes. Most likely cause is something wrong with the liver or gall bladder.
Kiel Classification
A classification system introduced in 1974 for differentiating types of Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.  Popular in Europe. Newer classifications such as the REAL system are more commonly used today.
Ki-1 Lymphoma
The old classification of an Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (ALCL).
Kytril
(Generic drug name granisetron) - an antiemetic (nausea suppression) drug commonly prescribed for chemotherapy-induced nausea. More Information on Kytril.
Leukocyte
A white blood cell (wbc).  There are 3 main types of leukocytes: monocytes, granulocytes, and lymphocytes.
Leukopenia
A low number of leukocytes or wbc's. Leukopenia decreases the body’s ability to fight disease and infections.
Low Grade
Low grade is associated with indolent, or slow growing cancers.  NHL types that are low grade (indolent) are small lymphocytic, small cleaved cell follicular, mixed follicular, small cleaved cell diffuse, intermediately differentiated diffuse and cutaneous T-cell (mycosis fungoides).
Lumbar Puncture
Also called a spinal tap - involves the removal of the fluid in the spine for examination.  Can cause headache afterwards.
Lymph
The almost colorless fluid that bathes body tissues and carries cells that help fight infection.
Lymph nodes
Small, bean-shaped organs located along the lymphatic system. Nodes filter out bacteria or cancer cells that may travel through the lymphatic system. Also called lymph glands.
Lymphangiogram
An X-ray of the lymphatic system. A contrast agent (dye) is injected (usually between the toes) to outline the lymphatic vessels and organs. More Information about Lymphangiograms 
Lymphatic system/lymph system
The tissues and organs (including the bone marrow, spleen, thymus, and lymph nodes) that produce and store cells that fight infection and the network of vessels that carry lymph.
Lymphedema
The swelling of the arms and or legs that may result from the blockage or removal of lymph nodes. Not the same as of lymphoma.
">Lymphoblastic Lymphoma (LBL)
A very aggressive non-hodgkin's lymphoma often occurring in younger patients. Intensive combination chemotherapy is standard treatment. See thelymphoblasic lymphoma information page for more information.
Lymphocytes
A type of white blood cell that fights infection and disease and is found in the bloodstream, the lymphatic system, and lymphoid organs. The two main types of lymphocytes - B cells (bone marrow derived lymphocytes) and T cells (thymus derived lymphocytes or thymocytes) combine forces to regulate the immune response.
Lymphoma
A subset of cancers that begin in the lymph system. Lymphomas are broken down into two categories - Hodgkin's Disease and the Non-Hodgkin's Lymphomas. 
Lymphomatoid Granulomatosis
A B-cell lymphoma that is now called pulmonary angiocentric B-cell lymphoma.
Lymphomatoid Papulosis (LyP)
A rare skin disorder that appears to be cancer but is actually benign in most cases.  More Information.
Lymphoplasmacytic Lymphoma (LPL)
An indolent non-hodgkin's lymphoma. See the Lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma page for more information.
MabThera
UK trade name for rituxan.
Macrophage
A type of white blood cell that fights inflammation.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
A test that uses a magnetic field sensor and computers to create 3-dimensional images of the body. It is similar to computerized tomography (CT scan) but uses magnets instead of x-rays.
Malignant
Cancerous (see Cancer).
MALT/MALToma
Mucosa-Associated Lymphoid Tissue) - A low grade B-Cell non-hodgkin's lymphoma arising most commonly in the stomach, salivary gland, lung, or thyroid tissue.  The gastrointestinal tract, particularly the stomach, is the most frequently involved site. The bacteria Helicobacter pylori is found in up to 92% of patients with gastric MALT lymphoma. See the new page on Marginal Zone Lymphomas for more information.
Mantle Cell Lymphoma
An aggressive form of non-hodgkin's lymphoma.   More on the Mantle Cell Lymphoma page.
Marginal Zone Lymphoma
A term used to encompass indolent B-cell lymphomas that are either MALT or monocytoid B-cell lymphoma. See the page on Marginal Zone Lymphomas for more information.
Medicare
A US federal medical insurance program for senior citizens and the disabled.
Metastasis
Spread of cancer cells from the original site to other parts of the body.
Monoclonal Antibody
An artificially made antibody used against a specific antigen. Use of monoclonal antibodies is being researched to target chemotherapy or radioactive substances directly to cancer cells.
Monocytes
A type of leukocyte (white blood cell) that defends the body against bacterial infections.  They also ingest aging and degenerating blood cells.
MRI
See Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Mucositis
Inflammation of the mucus membranes (like the mouth) that causes pain, soreness, and/or excessive mucus production.
Mycosis Fungoides
A type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that first appears on the skin. Also called cutaneous T-cell lymphoma.
Nasal T-cell Lymphoma
A subset of angiocentric lymphomas, it is treated with doxorubicin (adriamycin) based combination chemotherapy and is managed like diffuse large cell lymphoma.
Needle Biopsy
A sample of tissue is taken with a needle and looked at under a microscope.
Neoplasm
Malignant (cancerous) growth.
Neupogen
See Granulocyte Colony-Stimulating Factor (G-CSF)
Neurologic(al)
Involving the nerves or nervous system.
Neutropenia
A low number of neutrophils or white blood cells (WBC's); may increase the risk of infection depending how low the wbc count is and for how long it has been low.
Neutrophil
A type of white blood cell that fights bacterial infection (also called a granulocyte).
Night Sweats
Profuse sweating during the night.
Non-Hodgkin's Lymphomas (NHL)
A group of lymphomas characterized by cancerous growth of different types of lymphatic cells, excluding those characterized by Hodgkin's Disease. The lymphomas are broken down into three grades depending on how fast the particular lymphoma develops: low grade, intermediate grade, and high grade.
Oncologist
A doctor who specializes in the study, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of individuals with cancer.
Oncology
Study of the development, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of cancer.
Palliative
Treatment designed to reduce the symptoms of a disease rather than to cure it.
Pathologist
A doctor who specializes in identifying diseases by studying cells and tissues under a microscope.
Pediatric
Relating to children, childhood.
Peer Support
Structured relationship in which people meet in order to provide or exchange emotional support with others facing similar challenges.
Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplant (PBSCT)
Similar to a bone marrow transplant (BMT), young blood stem cells are collected from the patient (autologous) or another matched donor (allogeneic) usually by a process called apheresis. High dose chemotherapy and/or radiation is given, and the stem cells reinfused to the patient to re-establish (rescue) the patients immune system.
Peripheral Neuropathy
Numbness, tingling, burning, and/or weakness in the extremities (usually hands and/or feet).  The chemotherapy drugs vinblastine (Hodgkin's) and vincristine (used for some NHLs) can cause varying degrees of peripheral neuropathy.  More on the Peripheral Neuropathy page.
Plasma
The liquid part of the blood, lymph, and intracellular fluid in which cells are suspended.
Plasma Cell
An antibody producing, mature B cell found in lymphoid tissue.
Platelet
A blood cell that helps to control bleeding by inducing clotting. Also called a thrombocyte.
Poorly-differentiated lymphocytic lymphoma
The old Rappaport classification for the form of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma now known as follicular center cell lymphoma with a large component of small-cleaved cells.
Port
A small plastic or metal container surgically placed under the skin and attached to a central venous catheter inside the body.  Blood and fluids can enter or leave the body through the port using a special needle.
Primary Tumor
Tumor at the original cancer site.
Prognosis
The probable outcome of a disease; the prospect of recovery.
Protocol
Medical treatment plan.
Pruritus
Itching (sometimes an unofficial "B" symptom of Hodgkin's Disease).
Pulminary Angiocentric B-cell lymphoma
Formerly called lymphomatoid granulomatosis, it is a condition that when malignant is treated with doxorubicin (Adriamycin) based combination chemotherapy and is treated like diffuse large cell lymphoma.
Purging
In cancer treatment purging refers to the removal of cancer or T cells in bone marrow or stem cells prior to BMT or PBSCT.
Radiation Therapy
Treatment with high-energy radiation from X-rays or other sources of radiation (like radioisotopes).
Recurrence
The return of cancer after a period of being diagnosed cancer free (in remission).
Red Blood Cell (RBC)
Blood cell that carries oxygen to the cells of the body and removes carbon dioxide.
Red Blood Cell Count
Measurement of the number of red blood cells in a sample of blood.
Reed-Sternberg Cell
A type of cell that appears in patients with Hodgkin's disease.
Refractory
Not yielding (at least not yielding readily) to treatment.
Regimen
A combination of drugs and how they are administered.
Regression
Reduction in symptoms or disease process.
Relapse
The return of symptoms and signs of a disease after a period of improvement.
Remission
The complete disappearance of cancer cells and symptoms. It does not always mean the individual has been cured.
Rituxan (Generic name Rituximab, British name MabThera)
The new monoclonal antibody drug that has received US FDA approval for low grade Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. More on the Rituxan page.
Secondary Malignancy
Cancer that develops after treatment for a first cancer but is not related to the first cancer. Some lymphoma treatments have been linked to a small likelihood of secondary malignancies including solid tumors and leukemia.
Side Effect
Secondary effect caused by cancer treatment.
Sperm Banking
Freezing sperm for future use. This procedure can allow men to father children after loss of fertility.
Spleen
An organ that produces lymphocytes, filters the blood, stores blood cells, and destroys those that are aging. It is located on the left side of the abdomen near the stomach.
Splenectomy
Surgical removal of the spleen. This is sometimes done during staging of lymphoma.
Splenomegaly
Enlargement of the spleen.
Stage
The extent to which lymphoma has spread from its original site to other parts of the body. Usually denoted by a number from Stage 1 (least severe) to Stage 4 (more advanced). Different lymphoma types have different criteria for staging.
Staging
Determining the stage of the lymphoma. Staging may be done by physical examination, medical testing, or surgery.
Standard Treatment
Treatment that has been proven effective and is commonly used.
Stem Cell Collection
See Apheresis.
Stem Cells
Primitive cells found mostly in the bone marrow but also in the blood stream. Stem cells are capable of becoming several types of mature blood cells making them effective at rejuvenating the circulatory and immune systems in case of damage.
Stomatitus
Inflammation of the mouth.
Subcutaneous
Under the skin.
Support Group
Group of individuals who meet on a regular basis to exchange mutual support, often focusing on a shared area of difficulty. Many groups are organized at hospitals or treatment centers and people meet others live with a trained leader.  Recently support groups can also meet on the Internet and chats are hosted by a survivor. See SupportGroups.com
Survivorship
Living with a history of cancer, from the time of diagnosis on, regardless of the treatment outcome.
Syngeneic Bone Marrow Transplant
A bone marrow transplant where the donor is an identical twin to the patient.
Systemic
Affecting the whole body rather than one part or organ.
T Cell
A type of lymphocyte that attacks any foreign substance in the body. Also called a thymocyte (thymus derived lymphocyte).
T-cell Lymphoma/Leukemia
A condition caused by infection with the retro-virus human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I.  Classified as an aggressive non-hodgkin's lymphoma. More on T-Cell Lymphomas.
Taste Alteration
Temporary change in taste that may be a side effect of chemotherapy, cancer, or radiation.
T Cell
A type of lymphocyte that attacks any foreign substance in the body. Also called a thymocyte (thymus derived lymphocyte).
T-cell Lymphoma/Leukemia
A condition caused by infection with the retro-virus human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I.  Classified as an aggressive non-hodgkin's lymphoma.
Thromboctyopenia
A low number of platelets/thrombocytes in the blood. This can happen during a bone marrow transplant or stem cell transplant. It can cause spontaneous bleeding of gums or nose and bleeding of other tissues.  Unexplained bruising of the skin is also characteristic.
Thymus
Tissue
A group of similar cells that work together to perform a specific function.
Topical
Applied directly to the skin.
Total Body Irradiation (TBI)
Radiation aimed at the entire body to destroy cancer cells. Often used in Bone Marrow transplants possibly with chemotherapy to destroy cancer (which also destroys the immune system's ability to make blood cells hence the transplant of cells back into the patient).
Tumor
An abnormal mass of tissue that results from excessive cell division. Tumors perform no useful body function. They may be either benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer).
Tumor Board
A group of specialists who meet regularly to discuss management of individuals who have cancer.
Tumor Burden
The amount of cancer cells that are present in the body.
Tumor Marker
Proteins and other substances found in the blood that signify the presence of cancer somewhere in the body.
Ultrasound/Ultrasonography
A technique in which high-frequency sound waves bounce off internal organs and their echoes are changed into pictures of organs inside the body.
Undifferentiated
Cells that lack a specialized structure and function.
Vein
A blood vessel that carries blood to the heart.
Venipuncture
The process in which the vein is punctured to draw a blood sample, to give medication, or to start an intravenous drip.
An organ in which lymphocytes mature and multiply. It lies behind the breastbone.
Vinblastine
A chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease. Common brand names are velban, velsar, velbe. Originally derived from the common periwinkle Catharantus roseus. Can cause peripheral neuropathy in some patients.
Vincristine
A chemotherapy drug sometimes used to treat Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Originally derived from the common periwinkle Catharantus roseus. Can cause peripheral neuropathy in some patients.
Watch and Wait
A period of using no treatment or little treatment and seeing how the lymphoma progresses. Typically a strategy used for low grade/indolent non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. More on the Watch and Wait page.
Well-differentiated lymphocytic lymphoma
Old Rappaport classification for the form of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma now known as small lymphocytic lymphoma.
White Blood Cell (WBC)
A variety of cells that fight infection in the body and are part of the immune system.
White Blood Cell Count
Measurement of the total number of white blood cells in a sample of blood. Blood Count Information.
X-ray
High energy electromagnetic radiation that is used to diagnose and treat cancer.
Zofran
(Generic name ondansetron Hcl) - an antiemetic (nausea suppression) drug commonly prescribed for chemotherapy induced nausea.

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