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What is follicular lymphoma?

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Quick Answer

Follicular lymphoma is the most common slow-growing form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, according to the Lymphoma Research Foundation. Follicular lymphoma is a type of blood cancer that tends to grow in a circular pattern in the lymph nodes.

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What is follicular lymphoma?
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Full Answer

Follicular lymphoma accounts for approximately one out of every five blood cancers in the United States, claims the American Cancer Society as of 2014. Rarely found in young people, follicular lymphoma often occurs in lymph node areas around the body and in the bone marrow. Painless swelling in the neck, armpits or groin is usually the first symptom of the condition. Some patients experience other symptoms, including night sweats, fevers and weight loss.

Follicular lymphomas respond positively to treatments, but they are difficult to cure, adds the American Cancer Society. Treatment options vary depending on the severity of the symptoms and the cancer's growth rate. Doctors may choose not to treat a patient right away if few or no symptoms are visible, according to the Lymphoma Research Foundation. Treatments include radiation and chemotherapy. Chemotherapy drugs, radioimmunotherapy and autologous stem cell transplant are recommended for patients with advanced or relapsed follicular lymphoma. Treatments can provide cancer patients with periods of remission, and they can be treated again if the lymphoma returns, states Macmillan Cancer Support.

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