Our Treatment Approach
Children with Hodgkin lymphoma are treated at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's through the Childhood Lymphoma Program in our Childhood Hematologic Malignancy Center. Dana-Farber/Boston Children's offers internationally renowned care for children with cancers of the blood and immune system.
Dana-Farber/Boston Children's also offers a wide array of support services and programs for pediatric patients and their families during and after cancer treatment.
The course of treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma depends on many factors, such as the stage of the tumor. It may include the following; alone, or in combination:
- Chemotherapy: A drug treatment that interferes with the cancer cell's ability to grow or reproduce. For some types of cancer, chemotherapy is used alone, while in other types it is used in combination with another therapy or therapies.
- Radiation therapy: Uses high-energy rays (radiation) from a specialized machine to damage or destroy cancer cells and shrink tumors. Utilizing radiation therapy is based on a tumor's initial stage at diagnosis and its response to chemotherapy.
- Surgery: May be used to treated lymphocytic predominant disease that involves only one lymph node but is not used to treat classical Hodgkin lymphoma.
- Stem cell transplant: Often used when lymphoma progresses despite initial treatment, or when it relapses. Stem cell transplantation for patients with Hodgkin lymphoma most often involves collecting stem cells from the patient, followed by administering very high doses of chemotherapy to eliminate lymphoma cells in the bone marrow. After high-dose chemotherapy, the patient's stem cells that were already collected are infused back into the body and bone marrow function is restored.
Treatment Options for Progressive or Recurrent Hodgkin Lymphoma
Treatment of recurrent Hodgkin lymphoma depends on where the disease recurs, previous treatments and the time since the first treatment was completed. These treatments include:
- Chemotherapy with or without radiation therapy
- High-dose chemotherapy with stem cell transplant
- Chemotherapy with monoclonal antibody therapy