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Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

Why choose Ochsner Health for your non-Hodgkin lymphoma care?

Ochsner provides exceptional care for patients with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. As a nationally recognized leader in cancer care, we have the experience and the resources to treat high-grade lymphomas that other facilities cannot. Our multidisciplinary team of physicians and staff works with you from diagnosis to treatment to follow-up care and beyond.

Ochsner is the first hospital in Louisiana and the only center in the area to offer CAR T-cell therapy, a type of advanced immunotherapy that uses T-cells from the immune system to fight cancer. Our Stem Cell Transplant and Cellular Therapy Program is fully accredited by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy — the only accrediting organization that addresses all quality aspects of stem cell and cellular therapy — to perform bone marrow and stem cell transplants harvested from your own body and those donated by others. Ochsner also provides access to clinical trials for new treatments. Our team is nationally recognized as High Performing for Cancer Care by U.S. News & World Report.

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a blood cancer that affects the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system includes your bone marrow, lymph nodes, spleen and thymus gland, which all work together to help your body fight infection. But if you have non-Hodgkin lymphoma, your body overproduces white blood cells called lymphocytes. No specific cause of non-Hodgkin lymphoma exists, and anyone can get the disease. However, it is most common in men, older people and white people. Another risk factor is having a weak immune system due to other medical conditions. Common symptoms of non-Hodgkin lymphoma include:

  • Fatigue

  • Fever

  • Itchy skin or rash

  • Night sweats

  • Swollen lymph nodes in the armpits, abdomen, groin or neck

  • Weight loss

There are two overall types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma: aggressive and indolent. Aggressive non-Hodgkin lymphoma spreads quickly and causes more severe symptoms, while indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma grows slowly and has fewer symptoms. There are over 60 different subtypes of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

If your Ochsner doctor suspects you have non-Hodgkin lymphoma, they will order several tests to confirm the diagnosis and determine the specific subtype of your disease. In addition to a complete physical examination, you will need some or all of the following tests:

  • Blood tests, which measure the status of your white blood cells and look at chromosomal or other changes to your cells

  • Bone marrow biopsy from your hip bone to see if cancer has spread to your bone marrow

  • Imaging, such as a chest X-ray, CT scan, MRI or PET scan

  • Lymph node biopsy, which removes a partial or entire lymph node to diagnose the subtype of non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Once these tests are complete, your physician can determine the stage and grade of your cancer, which is a sign of how far and where it has spread. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma staging works differently than for most other types of cancers. While a Stage IV diagnosis is more serious than a Stage I diagnosis, non-Hodgkin lymphoma does not always start with a localized Stage I cancer and then grow to Stage II, then Stage III. Your Ochsner team will explain what your specific staging, grading and cancer subtype means for you.

Because non-Hodgkin lymphoma is not one disease, treatment varies by patient. Ochsner oncology and hematology doctors work as a team to find the best treatment program for your specific non-Hodgkin lymphoma. This treatment may include:

  • CAR T-cell therapy or other immunotherapy, which uses your own immune system to fight cancer

  • Chemotherapy, which uses powerful cancer-fighting medications to destroy cancer cells

  • Immunotherapy to assist your immune system in destroying cancer cells.

  • Radiation, which shrinks tumors using high-energy x-rays

  • Stem cell transplant, which uses your own or donor cells to restore your depleted white blood cells

  • Targeted therapy, a type of precision medicine that uses drugs to attack certain cancer cells

Ochsner also offers many non-Hodgkin lymphoma patients access to ongoing clinical trials that offer new treatments for lymphoma, with no travel required. These trials represent the future of non-Hodgkin lymphoma treatment, including bispecific T-cell engager antibody therapy, a new form of immunotherapy.

During treatment, you will also receive additional supportive treatments to protect you from infection and prevent discomfort. This treatment may include:

  • Antibiotics to prevent and fight infection

  • Anti-nausea medications to ease side effects

  • Blood or platelet transfusion to restore blood cells destroyed by treatment

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma care at Ochsner involves an entire team of hematologists, pathologists, radiologists, blood bank and cellular processing physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, pharmacists, nurses, psychologists, dietitians, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and social workers. Our collaborative approach helps ensure that we treat your whole person, not just the cancer in your bloodstream.

While many types of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma are manageable, aggressive treatment can cause other health problems, such as immune system complications and damage to certain organs. Ochsner physicians work with you long after treatment has ended to monitor possible long-term side effects. Ochsner cancer care also offers access to integrative medicine with options such as acupuncture, which may help with the side effects of treatment.

One of the hardest parts of cancer treatment is trying to cope with everything else a diagnosis brings beyond the physical implications — changes in your mental health and adjustments to your family and work life. Ochsner offers many supportive resources, such as:

Ochsner staff will work with you and your family to provide access to all the supportive care you need to make your cancer journey easier.

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Map of Ochsner-affiliated facilities that provide services related to Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Locations

Ochsner University Hospital & Clinics
2390 West Congress St.
Lafayette, LA 70506
  • Open 24/7
Ochsner Acadia General Hospital
1305 Crowley Rayne Highway
Crowley, LA 70526
  • Open 24/7
Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport - Feist-Weiller Cancer Center
1501 Kings Highway
Shreveport, LA 71103
  • Monday – Friday: 7 a.m.-4 p.m.
St. Tammany Cancer Center - A Campus of Ochsner Medical Center
900 Ochsner Blvd.
Covington, LA 70433
  • Mon – Fri: 7 a.m.-6 p.m.
Ochsner Lafayette General Medical Center
1214 Coolidge St.
Lafayette, LA 70503
  • Open 24/7
Ochsner Cancer Center – Baton Rouge
17050 Medical Center Drive
Baton Rouge, LA 70816
Ochsner Medical Center – New Orleans
1514 Jefferson Highway
New Orleans, LA 70121
  • Open 24/7