What Is the Prognosis After the Diagnosis of a Brain Lymphoma?

Without treatment, a typical prognosis for a patient with brain lymphoma is life expectancy of less than two months, according to the New York Times Health Guide. With chemotherapy treatment, patients typically live three to four years or longer, depending on the return or continued remission of the tumor.

Cancer of the cells in the brain’s lymphatic system is often referred to as Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma, states The New York Times. This type of cancer is considered rare, although the number of cases is rising, as of 2015. It is more common in people with weakened immune systems, such as those with HIV or recent organ transplant recipients. It typically affects people age 45 to 70 and accounts for 2 to 3 percent of all brain tumors.

The American Cancer Society states that prognoses for people with lymphoma of the brain are “fairly poor,” but advancements in treatment allow some patients to live at least five years after diagnosis. Due to its location deep inside the brain and the potential complications, treating the tumor can be difficult. The cancer can spread quickly, and surgery is usually not a treatment option. The American Brain Tumor Association says the neoplasm is typically treated first with steroids, then by chemotherapy, either with or without radiation.

Those with questions or concerns about cancer treatment are strongly encouraged to consult a physician, as this is general information and is not a substitute for medical care.