Lymphoma Secondary Cancer

Lymphoma secondary cancers are cancers that develop as a direct result of the treatment of lymphoma. This may happen during the treatment of any cancer, and is not limited to that of lymphoma, and is often due to the high levels of chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy to which the patient is subjected when treating the original cancer. Regrettably, there are no effective measures that can be taken in order to avoid this unfortunate side-effect. Indeed, some would argue that hope lies in the development of new cancer fighting methods rather than drastic improvement of current methods.

Lymphoma Cancer

Lymphoma is a type of cancer that was first detected and described by British scientist Thomas Hodgkin. This was back in 1832, and since then over 70 specific forms lymphoma have been found; initially these were categories as either Hodgkin's or non-Hodgkin's lymphoma depending on their characteristic, though in the past 20 years more specific methods of categorisation have been developed.

It affects your body's T-cells, B-cells and Natural Killer-cells, which are collectively known as lymphocytes, and these are an important part of your body's immune defence system. Indeed, they play a part in fighting viral infections and tumours. Unfortunately this does not make them immune to developing cancer.

Lymphoma Treatment

Lymphoma cancer is most often treated through chemotherapy, and the dosage will vary depending on various patient specific factors. In some cases this will mean that the patient requires large doses of treatment for a long period of time, while others do not, and in further cases yet the patient will require some degree of radio therapy treatment. Indeed, some will need to undergo several years' worth of treatment, while others will only need 4-5 sessions.

Lymphoma Secondary Cancer

Lymphoma secondary cancer is caused by the above treatments, and the higher the dosage received, and the longer the period, the more likely will the patient be to develop a secondary cancer. Another factor that will impact on the likelihood of developing a secondary cancer is the patient's age, with younger patient's being more likely to do so; this is likely due to their overall longer life expectancy – the risk of developing a secondary cancer in the first 20 years of receiving treatment is 10 per cent, and after 30 years this risk has been shown to increase to 25 per cent. Thus those with a longer life expectancy are more likely to develop a lymphoma secondary cancer.

Common Secondary Cancers

Common lymphoma secondary cancers include:

  • Leukaemia
  • Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Bone cancer
  • Stomach cancer

As always, your doctor is the person best equipped to inform you of the specific risks and likelihoods in your particular case. Never accept general advice and information as fact; see it as a source of general information that may or may not relate to your case, but always remember that no one who has got all the information on your specific case can give you 100% correct information, nor can other cancer sufferer's experiences be directly related to your case.

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