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What is Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma?

Illustration of the lymphatic system

Non-Hodgkins lymphoma is a type of cancer in the lymphatic system. Non-Hodgkins lymphoma causes the cells in the lymphatic system to abnormally reproduce, eventually causing tumors to grow.  Because lymph tissue is found throughout the body, adult non-Hodgkins lymphoma can begin in almost any part of the body. Cancer can spread to the liver and many other organs and tissues.

Types of Non-Hodgkins Lymphomas

There are many types of non-Hodgkins lymphomas. Some types spread more quickly than others. The type is determined by how the cancer cells look under a microscope. This determination is called the histology. The histologies for adult non-Hodgkins lymphoma are divided into 2 groups:

Aggressive lymphomas are also seen more frequently in patients who are HIV-positive (AIDS-related lymphoma).


People have survived every stage of non-Hodgkins lymphoma. People with non-Hodgkins lymphoma now have more treatment choices and more hope for survival than ever before.

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