Lymphoma Cancer Bone Marrow Transplants

With the spread of lymphoma cancer, there has been the search for more effective treatments to be used in curing this type of cancer. Lymphoma cancer is any cancer of the immune system and can cover a wide range of cancer diseases. However, there are two basic types of lymphoma and these are Hodgkin's lymphoma, also known as Hodgkin's disease and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). The treatment used depends on the type and stage of the cancer and though they often intersect, treatment for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma usually varies from that used in Hodgkin's lymphoma. An example of this is lymphoma cancer bone marrow transplants.

What are Lymphoma Cancer Bone Marrow Transplants?

These are quite similar to stem cell transplants, which are another form of treatment used for curing cancer patients.  It makes it possible to deliver a high dose of chemotherapy, which is sometimes combined with radiotherapy to a cancer patient.  When a higher dose of treatment is administered, the possibilities of curing lymphoma increase.  However, higher doses are not often given because of the debilitating effects which chemotherapy and radiotherapy can have on the good cells in the body.

Lymphoma is cancer of the immune system and it spreads rapidly through the blood and the bone marrow.  This bone marrow is responsible for the blood cells and so the cancer cells are often transported to other parts of the body through this means.  The effect of a higher dose of chemotherapy is that is kills the bone marrow, which also kills the cancer cells but makes it impossible for the body to produce blood cells.

Lymphoma cancer bone marrow transplants enable the doctor to first remove the bone marrow before the higher doses of treatment are given.  This is called a bone marrow harvest.  After the chemotherapy has been administered, the bone marrow is placed back through a transfusion so that the body can once more produce blood cells.

How are Lymphoma Cancer Bone Marrow Transplants Performed?

Before a lymphoma cancer bone marrow transplant is performed, it is first established that the patient is healthy enough to undergo the operation.  A lot of factors come into play here including the age of the patient, the physical condition and the type and stage of the cancer.  Several tests are carried out prior to the bone marrow transplant and these include tests on the patient's heart, kidneys, lungs and other organs.  These tests usually do not require any hospitalisation as they are done on an outpatient basis.

Where Can I Get Lymphoma Cancer Bone Marrow Transplants?

Lymphoma cancer bone marrow transplants provide an emerging area of lymphoma cancer treatment and as such not very many hospitals currently provide this treatment option to patients.  Here are a few:

  • Barts Cancer Centre
  • Newcastle Hospitals
  • Cancer Centre at the Bupa Cromwell Hospital, London

These days more patients go for stem cell surgery because it is not as invasive as lymphoma cancer bone marrow transplants.  Nevertheless, this form of cancer treatment has its place and can be used in successfully treating lymphoma cancer.

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