Lymphoma Overview

A cancer that begins in the immune system

Lymphoma is the name for a group of blood cancers that develop in the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is part of the body’s immune system that fights infections and drains excess fluid from body tissues. The two types of lymphoma are:

  • Hodgkin lymphoma (also called Hodgkin's disease) 
  • All other lymphomas (also called non-Hodgkin lymphomas) 

There are many types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Aggressive (also called high-grade) lymphomas grow and spread quickly. Non-aggressive (also called indolent or low-grade) lymphomas grow slowly and cause few or no symptoms.

Hodgkin lymphoma is one of the most curable forms of cancer. It was named for the doctor who first described the disease. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a group of cancers. We diagnose and treat each type of lymphoma differently.

Lymphoma can start almost anywhere in the body. It may start in the lymph nodes or an organ such as the spleen. It can spread to any part of the body.

Treatment can cure some people and may allow others to live for years. How well treatment works depends mostly on the type of lymphoma and when it’s diagnosed.

Care coordination

Each person is unique, so we tailor your care to your personal needs. This means doctors, nurses and other staff work closely together. Doctors meet weekly at a tumor conference, where they discuss your care and compare it to national guidelines. They discuss every patient’s treatment as a team to stay up to date on your care and treatment.

Advanced technology

Accurate diagnosis and successful treatment requires the best technologies. Our diagnostic tools for lymphoma include X-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, PET scans and bone marrow biopsies. All patients need a biopsy to confirm their diagnosis. After diagnosis, treatment plans include chemotherapy, biotherapy and targeted therapy. We also may use surgery or radiation therapy, depending on the type of lymphoma.

Clinical trials

We are part of many national clinical trials on cancer treatment. So, you benefit from our staff’s exposure to the latest options. You also may be able to take part in a clinical trial during your treatment.

Make an appointment:
Call: 913-588-1227
Toll free: 844-323-1227

Referring physicians:
Call: 913-588-5862 
Toll free: 877-588-5862

24 hour appointment

The University of Kansas Cancer Center offers patients who are newly diagnosed with cancer the opportunity to see a physician within 24 hours of contacting us. Click here to learn more.