IN THIS ARTICLE
What Medications Treat Lymphoma?
Numerous chemotherapy and biological drug combinations may be prescribed by an oncologist. Which type and combination of therapy depends on many factors, including the type and stage of lymphoma, the age of the patient, the ability to tolerate chemotherapy side effects, and if any previous treatment for the lymphoma has occurred. Oncologists often work together regionally to decide which combination of chemotherapy and biological drugs are currently working best for their patients. Because of this regional collaboration, the drug combinations often vary and are able to change rapidly when improved results occur.
What Other Therapies Treat Lymphoma?
Watchful waiting means choosing to observe and monitor the cancer rather than treat it right away. This is strategy is sometimes used for indolent recurrent tumors. Treatment is given only if the cancer starts to grow more rapidly or to cause symptoms or other problems.
Stem cell transplantation is usually not used as a primary therapy in lymphoma.
An oncologist may belong to a network of investigators who offer novel treatments for various types of cancers. These novel therapies are newer agents that have been recently developed, and extensive data on treatment results are not yet known. Such new agents can be offered in the context of a clinical trial. Usually, a consent form that explains the drug, its known side effects, its potential side effects, and alternatives to the drug treatment are presented to the patient. If the treatment seems promising for the particular subtype of lymphoma, and the patient is fully educated about the potential benefits and risks associated with such treatment and is interested in receiving such treatment, then the consent form is signed by the patient and the managing physician, and possibly other involved parties. The patient is then enrolled in a treatment protocol that specifies exactly how a patient is to be treated with the new therapy.
Alternatively, an oncologist may refer a patient to another institution to receive investigational treatment or intensive treatment, such as a stem cell transplant.
Several alternative therapies have undergone preliminary testing in lymphoma. None has been found to work better than or as well as standard medical therapies. A few therapies, still felt to be experimental, have been found to be potentially helpful as complements to medical therapy, however.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/25/2016
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE
Must Read Articles Related to Lymphoma
Patient Comments & Reviews
The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Lymphoma:
Lymphoma - Symptoms
Lymphoma symptoms can vary greatly from patient to patient. What were your symptoms at the onset of your disease?
Lymphoma - Effective Treatment
What treatment has been effective for your lymphoma?
Lymphoma - Experience
Please describe your experience with lymphoma.