Learning The Basics
blood cancer in the United States and the third most common childhood
cancer. The disease is more common in men than in women, with no
scientifically identifiable risk factors or causes. Most cases of NHL are
found in adults. The average age of diagnosis is in the early-to-mid 60s.
Many lymphomas are potentially curable – meaning you can rid yourself
of the disease forever, not just put it into remission. This may require very
strong treatments, though, especially in the case of an aggressive form.
Physicians think about lymphoma in terms of its behavior – aggressive or
indolent. Simply put, aggressive lymphomas grow more quickly. If not
treated, the disease can make a person very sick or become life-threatening
within months. Most cutaneous lymphomas are indolent (not aggressive
and slow growing).
An indolent lymphoma proceeds over years, often does not make people
sick and can be treated multiple times. In most cases, these conditions are
chronic rather than curable, and physicians look to manage the situation
over the course of a person’s life. Most skin lymphomas are very good
examples of indolent lymphomas.