Patients who present with or convert to aggressive forms of NHL may have sustained complete remissions with combination chemotherapy regimens or aggressive consolidation with marrow or stem cell support.[5,6] Late effects of treatment for non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) have been observed.
Pelvic radiation therapy and large cumulative doses of cyclophosphamide have been associated with a high risk of permanent sterility. For as many as three decades after diagnosis, patients are at a significantly elevated risk for second primary cancers, especially the following:[1-3] Left ventricular dysfunction was a significant late effect in long-term survivors of high-grade NHL who received more than 200 mg/m² of doxorubicin.[4,5] Myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myelogenous leukemia are late complications of myeloablative therapy with autologous bone marrow or peripheral blood stem cell support, as well as conventional chemotherapy-containing alkylating agents.[1,6-13] Most of these patients show clonal hematopoiesis even before the transplantation, suggesting that the hematologic injury usually occurs during induction or reinduction chemotherapy.[8,14,15] With a median 10-year follow-up after autologous bone marrow transplantation (BMT) with conditioning using cyclophosphamide and total-body radiation therapy, in a series of 605 patients, the incidence of a second malignancy was 21%, and 10% of those were solid tumors. Successful pregnancies with children born free of congenital abnormalities have been reported in young women after autologous BMT. Some patients have osteopenia or osteoporosis at the start of therapy; bone density may worsen after therapy for lymphoma. A pathologist should be consulted before a biopsy because some studies require special preparation of tissue (e.g., frozen tissue).
Since the prognosis and the approach to treatment are influenced by histopathology, outside biopsy specimens should be carefully reviewed by a hematopathologist who is experienced in diagnosing lymphomas.
Although lymph node biopsies are recommended whenever possible, sometimes immunophenotypic data are sufficient to allow diagnosis of lymphoma when fine-needle aspiration cytology is preferred.[1,2] Historically, uniform treatment of patients with non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) has been hampered by the lack of a uniform classification system.
Rearrangement of the Despite the advanced stage, the median survival ranges from 8 to 15 years, leading to the designation of being indolent.[5-7] Patients with advanced-stage follicular lymphoma are not cured with current therapeutic options.