Cancer Treatment Centers of America

Types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Lymphomas are classified based on the type of lymphocyte involved as well as several other factors, including cell size and how the cancer grows.

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma includes all kinds of lymphomas except Hodgkin lymphoma (also known as Hodgkin’s disease), which is marked by the presence of an abnormal lymphocyte called the Reed-Sternberg cell (or B lymphocyte).

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There are more than 30 distinct types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, which can be divided into aggressive (fast-growing or high grade) or indolent (slow-growing or low grade) types.

NHL is further divided according to the cell type involved. There are two main types of lymphocytes: B-lymphocytes (or B cells) and T-lymphocytes (or T cells). Most types of non-Hodgkin lymphomas develop from B cells.

  • Some forms of B-cell NHL include: diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, follicular lymphoma, Burkitt lymphoma, immunoblastic large cell lymphoma, precursor B-lymphoblastic lymphoma and mantle cell lymphoma.
  • Some forms of T-cell NHL include: mycosis fungoides, anaplastic large cell lymphoma, peripheral T-cell lymphoma and precursor T-lymphoblastic lymphoma.

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