Lymphoma (Hodgkin's and Non-Hodgkin's)

Lymphomas are cancers that begin in the cells of the immune system. There are two types of lymphomas:

  • Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Lymphomas: What You Need to Know 

Prevention
While there is no known way to completely prevent lymphoma, doctors recommend avoiding risk factors such as HIV and hepatitis virus. Frequent hand washing and practicing safe sex can help prevent many diseases, including lymphoma. 

Teamwork
Fletcher Allen doctors use a collaborative approach to treat lymphoma. Your team may include a number of different specialists working together to manage your care.

Technology
We use the most sophisticated technology available for diagnosing and treating lymphomas, including the latest advances in imaging scans, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. 

Personalized Care
Fletcher Allen doctors tailor a course of treatment specifically for you. Your treatment will depend on a number of factors, including the type of lymphoma you have, how severe it is and your overall health.

Experience, Trusted Expertise

At Fletcher Allen, our oncologists (cancer specialists) have years of experience diagnosing and treating both Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas. You can feel confident knowing you have placed your care in experienced and skilled hands.

What are lymphomas?

The lymphatic system is part of the immune system. A network of vessels carry a fluid called lymph, which contain cells called lymphocytes. Lymphocytes attack many infections and precancerous cells to help keep your body healthy. Cancer occurs when normal cells in the lymphatic system grow and multiply uncontrollably. This forms a mass called a tumor.

Lymphomas can be either Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL) or non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL). The University of Vermont Medical Group providers have extensive experience diagnosing and treating both HL and NHL. HL and NHL have many similarities. They may occur in the same place, cause the same symptoms and have a similar appearance. Differences include:

  • How they appear under a microscope
  • Which type of cell they develop from 
  • How they are treated

We don’t know what exactly causes lymphoma. Your risk may increase if you have a family history of lymphoma. Other risk factors may include:

  • Aging
  • Having been infected with:
    • HIV
    • Epstein-Barr virus
    • Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori)
    • Hepatitis B or C
  • Having a medical conditions that affects the immune system, such as HIV
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals

Diagnosis and Treatment: Lymphomas

Swelling, often pain, that occurs in the neck, under an arm or in the groin area, is often the first sign of lymphoma. If you have unexplained swelling that does not go away, make an appointment with your doctor. A number of different conditions could be causing the swelling, but it is important to have an expert diagnose you. If it is cancer, treatment is most successful in the early stages. 

At Fletcher Allen, our expert physicians will use advanced diagnostic procedures to obtain an accurate diagnosis. Then, we can create a personalized treatment plan for you. Treatment options often include chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

Learn more about lymphoma diagnosis and treatment.

Find a Fletcher Allen physician or call us at 877-540-HOPE (4673).