Alternate Names : Hodgkin's Disease
What are the treatments for the disease?
Some of the treatment options for Hodgkin's lymphoma are as follows:
chemotherapy, which uses chemicals or drugs to kill certain cells
a combination of both radiation and chemotherapy
Bone marrow transplants may be successful for some high-risk people whose lymphoma has recurred despite other treatments. This treatment involves giving the person high doses of chemotherapy, total body radiation, and an infusion of bone marrow from another person.
Hodgkin's lymphoma that recurs after radiation is often treated successfully with chemotherapy. If the spleen is involved, it may be removed with surgery.
What are the side effects of the treatments?
Radiation therapy can cause these side effects:
irritation of the esophagus or intestines
lymphedema, which occurs when a fluid called lymph builds up and causes swelling of an extremity
nausea and vomiting
risk for other cancers
temporarily lowered blood counts
Chemotherapy can cause side effects such as the following:
increased chance of needing blood transfusions
lowered blood cell counts
mouth and lip sores
nausea and vomiting
risk of infections
These treatments also can cause damage to the following areas:
A combination of radiation and chemotherapy can cause more severe side effects. High-dose chemotherapy and bone marrow transplantation are highly toxic and risky treatments. Sometimes the transplanted immune system attacks the person's normal cells and tissue. There can be mild problems with skin rash and diarrhea. There can also be major organ failure, causing death.
What happens after treatment for the disease?
After treatment, people are managed for chronic side effects. They are also monitored for recurrence of their disease. People who have had their spleen removed need to be vaccinated to prevent certain bacterial infections. Recommended vaccines include those for pneumonia, Haemophilus influenza, and, sometimes, meningococcal meningitis.
How is the disease monitored?
Hodgkin's disease sometimes recurs. For this reason, the healthcare provider will monitor a person for
several years by doing the following:
blood chemistry tests
bone marrow biopsies
complete blood counts
Any new or worsening symptoms should be reported to the healthcare provider.