What is the outlook for people with adult non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL)?

The outlook for people with this disease depends upon the stage of the cancer. Another factor is the type of lymphoma present. The age and general health of the patient also are taken into account. In general, the survival rate of patients with NHL at the five-year mark is generally favorable

Other facts:

  • Indolent NHLs have a median survival rate of as long as 20 years, and Stage I and Stage II varieties can often be treated with radiation alone.
  • When treated early, over half of patients with aggressive NHL can be cured with combination chemotherapies.

Can non-Hodgkins’s lymphoma (NHL) come back?

Yes. Most relapses of aggressive NHL occur within two years of treatment. Relapses of indolent lymphoma can occur later.

NHL might recur in two types of situations. In one, the NHL was never completely cured during treatment and so requires additional kinds of treatment. In the second, the disease was put into remission and then returns. This is called relapsed disease. It might happen because the slow-growing cells of low-grade lymphoma might not be affected by the treatment (which tends to kill faster-growing cells).

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