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.
Loss of hair, be it on the head or all over the body. Alopecia is a symptom of many chemotherapy drugs.
A medication used to treat anxiety or insomnia.
A pain-relieving drug. Common types are aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol®), and ibuprofen (Motrin®).
Treatment with substances that can stimulate the body's immune system to fight disease more effectively. Also called immunotherapy.
The removal of a sample of tissue followed by microscopic examination by a pathologist to see whether cancer cells are present.
A chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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)
The use of more than one drug to treat cancer. Some combinations are ABVD (Hodgkin's) or CHOP (NHL).
A medication used to treat nausea and vomiting.
Techniques or approaches often used in addition to standard treatment. Examples are diet or meditation.
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.
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.
A type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that first appears on the skin. Also called mycosis fungoides.
identification of abnormal chromosomes in a cellular tissue sample.
The study of cells, their origin, structure, function, and pathology.
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.
The generic name for Adriamycin, a chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat Hodgkin's disease.
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).
Difficulty in swallowing.
Swelling of a body part caused by an abnormal buildup of fluids.
Understanding another person's feelings by remembering or imagining being in a similar situation.
Having the right to make one's own choices and having the ability to act on them.
The study of the causes, distribution, and control of disease in populations.
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.
Redness of the skin.
The red blood cell that carries oxygen to the cells and carries carbon dioxide away from them.
Removal by surgery.
a lack of energy, general tiredness.
The ability to have children. Several treatments for lymphoma affect fertility.
A cluster of cells.
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.
having to do with the digestive tract, which includes the mouth, esophagus, stomach, and intestines.
The part of DNA that is responsible for determining a person's characteristics and that carries information from old cells to new cells.
The use of genes to treat cancer and other diseases.
The complete genetic information of a species.
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.
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.
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.
A doctor who specializes in the treatment of blood diseases.
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.
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.
A grade of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma denoting fast growth.
The old Rappaport classification for the form of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma now known as large cell lymphoma.
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.
A program designed for caring for terminally ill patients and their families.
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.
Nutritional support given through a vein.
The system within the body that recognizes and fights foreign cells and disease.
Determining what kind of surface molecules are present on cells. Used by pathologists to determine the exact type of lymphoma from a tissue sample.
A or other factor that prevents the immune system from reacting to foreign substances and fighting disease.
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.
legally required procedure to ensure that a patient knows about the potential risks and benefits of a treatment before it is started.
Administration of fluids or medications into the blood through the veins.
The pubic/groin region
use of a syringe and needle to deliver medications to the body (also called a "shot").
A natural substance produced by the body in response to a virus. Interferons can stimulate the immune system to fight the growth of cancer.
A natural hormone-like substance produced by the body that activates the growth of certain types of lymphocytes.
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.
Into an artery.
into the cancerous area in the skin.
Into the muscle.
Into the spinal fluid.
Within, or administered into, a vein.
A yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes. Most likely cause is something wrong with the liver or gall bladder.
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.
The old classification of an Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (ALCL).
(Generic drug name granisetron) - an antiemetic (nausea suppression) drug commonly prescribed for chemotherapy-induced nausea. More Information on Kytril.
A white blood cell (wbc). There are 3 main types of leukocytes: monocytes, granulocytes, and lymphocytes.
A low number of leukocytes or wbc's. Leukopenia decreases the body’s ability to fight disease and infections.
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).
Also called a spinal tap - involves the removal of the fluid in the spine for examination. Can cause headache afterwards.
The almost colorless fluid that bathes body tissues and carries cells that help fight infection.
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.
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.
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.
Cancerous (see Cancer).
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.
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.
A doctor who specializes in the study, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of individuals with cancer.
Study of the development, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of cancer.
Treatment designed to reduce the symptoms of a disease rather than to cure it.
A doctor who specializes in identifying diseases by studying cells and tissues under a microscope.
Relating to children, childhood.
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.
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.
The liquid part of the blood, lymph, and intracellular fluid in which cells are suspended.
An antibody producing, mature B cell found in lymphoid tissue.
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.
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.
Tumor at the original cancer site.
The probable outcome of a disease; the prospect of recovery.
Medical treatment plan.
Itching (sometimes an unofficial "B" symptom of Hodgkin's Disease).
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.
In cancer treatment purging refers to the removal of cancer or T cells in bone marrow or stem cells prior to BMT or PBSCT.
Treatment with high-energy radiation from X-rays or other sources of radiation (like radioisotopes).
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.
A type of cell that appears in patients with Hodgkin's disease.
Not yielding (at least not yielding readily) to treatment.
A combination of drugs and how they are administered.
Reduction in symptoms or disease process.
The return of symptoms and signs of a disease after a period of improvement.
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.
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.
Secondary effect caused by cancer treatment.
Freezing sperm for future use. This procedure can allow men to father children after loss of fertility.
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.
Surgical removal of the spleen. This is sometimes done during staging of lymphoma.
Enlargement of the spleen.
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.
Determining the stage of the lymphoma. Staging may be done by physical examination, medical testing, or surgery.
Treatment that has been proven effective and is commonly used.
Stem Cell Collection
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.
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
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.
Affecting the whole body rather than one part or organ.
A type of lymphocyte that attacks any foreign substance in the body. Also called a thymocyte (thymus derived lymphocyte).
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.
Temporary change in taste that may be a side effect of chemotherapy, cancer, or radiation.
A type of lymphocyte that attacks any foreign substance in the body. Also called a thymocyte (thymus derived lymphocyte).
A condition caused by infection with the retro-virus human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I. Classified as an aggressive non-hodgkin's lymphoma.
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.
A group of similar cells that work together to perform a specific function.
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).
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).
A group of specialists who meet regularly to discuss management of individuals who have cancer.
The amount of cancer cells that are present in the body.
Proteins and other substances found in the blood that signify the presence of cancer somewhere in the body.
A technique in which high-frequency sound waves bounce off internal organs and their echoes are changed into pictures of organs inside the body.
Cells that lack a specialized structure and function.
A blood vessel that carries blood to the heart.
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.
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.