What is Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma?
There are two common types of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma(NHL). B
cell NHL usually involves the lymph nodes of the head, neck and
throat, or abdomen. T cell NHL affects lymph nodes in the
Signs & Symptoms
In most cases a parent may notice swollen glands, such as those
in the neck, armpits or groin. These are usually painless. They do
not respond to antibiotic treatment. Children may experience loss
of appetite and weight loss, along with nausea, vomiting and
abdominal pain. Abdominal distension may occur. Difficulty with
breathing, croup, cough or asthma like symptoms may also be
present. Occasionally, the bone marrow or the fluid surrounding the
brain and spinal cord (CSF) may be involved.
The diagnosis is made by removing a lymph gland or taking a
biopsy from the affected area. Other tests may include blood tests,
and x-rays to find out if the NHL has spread to other glands. CT
scans, a lumbar puncture and a bone marrow aspirate may also be
done. (Refer to sheet on tests and procedures)
Chemotherapy is the most important treatment for children with
NHL. For B cell lymphoma treatment lasts around 6 months, involving
courses of chemotherapy every 2-3 weeks.
T cell NHL is treated like leukaemia, with initially intensive
chemotherapy followed by outpatient chemotherapy for a total of 2
years. Individualised chemotherapy drug sheets will be given to you
outlining your child's particular treatment.
Follow up care
Follow up care involves regular clinical examinations. After the
first few years the focus of follow up changes to monitoring growth
and development and other possible later side effects of