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What is Hodgkin lymphoma?
Hodgkin lymphoma, also called Hodgkin disease, is a type of cancer that develops in the lymph system. Your lymph system is part of your immune system. It helps protect your body from infection and disease.
The lymph system is made up of tissues and organs that produce, store, and carry white blood cells. It includes your:
Hodgkin lymphoma is one of the main types of lymphoma. The other is non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Each type starts in different types of white blood cells.
What causes Hodgkin lymphoma?
The cause of Hodgkin lymphoma is unknown. But there are certain people who are at higher risk of developing it.
Who is more likely to develop Hodgkin lymphoma?
Certain factors can make you more likely to develop Hodgkin lymphoma:
- Age. Hodgkin lymphoma is most common in early adulthood (age 20-39 years) and in late adulthood (age 65 years and older).
- Being male. The risk of adult Hodgkin lymphoma is slightly higher in males than in females.
- Past Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection. Having an infection with EBV as a young child or teenager increases your risk of Hodgkin lymphoma.
- A family history of Hodgkin lymphoma. Having a parent or sibling with Hodgkin lymphoma increases your risk of developing it.
What are the symptoms of Hodgkin lymphoma?
The signs and symptoms of Hodgkin lymphoma may include:
- Painless, swollen lymph nodes in the neck, underarm, or groin
- Fever for no known reason
- Drenching night sweats (very heavy sweating during sleep)
- Weight loss for no known reason in the past 6 months
- Itchy skin, especially after bathing or drinking alcohol
How is Hodgkin lymphoma diagnosed?
To find out if you have Hodgkin lymphoma, your provider:
- Will ask about your symptoms and medical history. This will include checking for signs of disease, such as lumps or anything else that seems unusual.
- May order some lab tests, such as:
What are the treatments for Hodgkin lymphoma?
Treatments for Hodgkin lymphoma include:
- Radiation therapy
- Targeted therapy, which uses drugs or other substances that attack specific cancer cells with less harm to normal cells
- Cancer immunotherapy
Hodgkin lymphoma can usually be cured if it is found and treated early.
NIH: National Cancer Institute
Diagnosis and Tests
- Blood Count Tests: MedlinePlus Health Topic (National Library of Medicine) Also in Spanish
- Bone Marrow Test (National Library of Medicine) Also in Spanish
- Needle Biopsy (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in Spanish
- PDL1 (Immunotherapy) Tests (National Library of Medicine) Also in Spanish
- Stages of Adult Hodgkin Lymphoma (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- Stages of Childhood Hodgkin Lymphoma (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- Tests for Hodgkin Lymphoma (American Cancer Society) Also in Spanish
Treatments and Therapies
- Bone Marrow Transplantation: MedlinePlus Health Topic (National Library of Medicine) Also in Spanish
- Drugs Approved for Hodgkin Lymphoma (National Cancer Institute)
- Integrative Medicine and Complementary and Alternative Therapies (Leukemia & Lymphoma Society) Also in Spanish
- Treating Nodular Lymphocyte-Predominant Hodgkin Lymphoma (American Cancer Society) Also in Spanish
- Treatment Option Overview (Adult Hodgkin Lymphoma) (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- Treatment Option Overview (Childhood Hodgkin Lymphoma) (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- Treatment Options for Primary Refractory/Recurrent Hodgkin Lymphoma in Children and Adolescents (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- General Information about AIDS-Related Lymphoma (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- Getting the Facts: Cancer-Related Fatigue (Lymphoma Research Foundation)
- What's the Difference between Hodgkin's Lymphoma and Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma? (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in Spanish
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Hodgkin Disease (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Deficit Accumulation Index and Biological Markers of Aging in Survivors of...
- Article: Psychological care over patients with lymphoma and lymphoma survivors.
- Article: Performance of the FACT-GOG-Ntx to assess chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) in...
- Hodgkin Lymphoma -- see more articles
- General Information about Childhood Hodgkin Lymphoma (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- Hodgkin Lymphoma (For Parents) (Nemours Foundation)