What Types of Lymphoma Are the Most Fatal?

The most dangerous, fatal types of lymphoma are non-Hodgkin mantle cell lymphoma, primary central nervous system lymphoma, angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma and peripheral T-cell lymphoma, according to the American Cancer Society. However, the prognosis and survival rate depend largely on when the cancer is caught and the aggressiveness of the treatment.

The most dangerous types of lymphoma are categorized under non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and then subcategorized as B-cell or T-cell lymphomas, explains the American Cancer Society. As of 2015, more than 85 percent of non-Hodgkin lymphomas in the United States occur in the B-cells. However, only the mantle cell and primary central nervous system lymphomas are considered the most fatal of the B-cells, while the other two most deadly lymphomas are located in the T-cells.

Only about 5 percent of lymphomas are from the slow-growing mantle cell lymphoma, but by the time it is found, it has usually spread too far for effective treatment, states the American Cancer Society. Primary central nervous system lymphoma is even more rare. It affects the brain, spinal cord and eyes, and is especially virulent in people with weak immune systems. Angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma occurs in older people and can be easily treated, but the cancer almost always comes back and spreads. Peripheral or unspecified T-cell lymphomas vary in size but often spread to the bones and through the gastrointestinal tract.