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Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma

Recovery & Follow Up

People who have had non-Hodgkin's lymphoma should have regular followup examinations during recovery from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma treatment. Followup care is an important part of the overall non-Hodgkin's lymphoma treatment plan, and people should not hesitate to discuss it with their health care provider. Regular follow up care after treatment ensures that patients are carefully monitored, any changes in health are discussed, and new or recurrent cancer can be detected and treated as soon as possible. Between followup appointments, people who have had non-Hodgkin's lymphoma should report any health problems as soon as they appear.

It is natural for anyone facing cancer to be concerned about what the future holds. Understanding the nature of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and what to expect can help patients and their loved ones plan treatment, anticipate lifestyle changes, and make quality of life and financial decisions.

Cancer patients frequently ask their doctors or search on their own for an answer to the question, "What is my prognosis?" Prognosis is a prediction of the future course and outcome of a disease and an indication of the likelihood of recovery. However, it is only an estimate. When doctors discuss a patient's prognosis, they are attempting to project what is likely to occur for that individual patient.

Sometimes non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients use statistics to try to figure out their chances of being cured. However, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma statistics reflect the experience of a large group of patients and cannot be used to predict what will happen to a particular patient because no two patients are alike. The prognosis for a person with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma can be affected by many factors, particularly the type and stage of the cancer and the patient's age, general health, and response to treatment. The doctor who is most familiar with a patient's situation is in the best position to help interpret statistics and discuss that person's prognosis.

When doctors talk about surviving cancer, they may use the term remission rather than cure. Although many people with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma are successfully treated, doctors use the term remission because cancer can return. It is important to discuss the possibility of recurrence with the doctor.

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