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Relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

If you’ve relapsed with aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), you may be starting to experience symptoms again. Alternatively, you may be feeling generally healthy but, during a routine check-up, your doctor may have noticed that you’ve relapsed.

Either way, you will probably be starting, or have already started, treatment again.

You should remember that nothing you’ve done has caused your NHL to relapse. It’s normal for people with aggressive NHL to experience a relapse, and maybe even several of them, throughout their life.

The treatment you receive is designed to help combat these relapses and give you as much symptom-free time as possible. Sometimes people with relapsed NHL are cured, although cure is less likely after relapse.

What will happen to me now I’ve relapsed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma?

This question will probably be at the top of your mind if you have found out that your aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) has relapsed. But, as you probably know by now, there are no easy answers to questions like this when you are dealing with cancer.

Everyone is different, and your experience of aggressive NHL will be unique to you.

It’s therefore important to be open with your doctor and healthcare team about any fears or worries that you may have, and to ask them for any information that you need. They are the people who know the most about your situation and will be able to give you the best advice. However, here at Lymphoma Life, we can give you a good overall picture of what happens to people who experience a relapse.

You may feel discouraged that your remission from aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma has moved into relapse, but there are reasons to stay positive

Many people who have relapsed with NHL are upset and have very real fears about facing treatment again, about what will happen this time round and what the future may hold. This is completely understandable as you could be starting to feel ill again – and hearing that you’ve relapsed can be quite an emotional blow.

However, try not to be too discouraged. A relapse can be a setback, but you now have another opportunity to treat it. Although relapsed aggressive NHL is not often cured, it does sometimes happen. You may be able to successfully live with the disease for a long time, and as the symptoms have been noticed, the disease can be treated appropriately.

For some people, relapsing will bring back bad memories of their initial treatment and the unpleasant side effects of therapy. However, it is possible that you will find treatment less difficult the second time as you now have more knowledge and experience of the hospital, the disease and the treatment than you did the first time.

 Many people with aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma will often have more than one round of treatment over the course of the disease

All NHL treatments are designed to help you live as normal a life as possible.

Remember, you’re an individual

This means it’s impossible to predict for certain exactly what will happen to you or how you’ll feel. It’s therefore very important that you speak to your doctor or healthcare team about your individual situation. Try to stay positive about going back into treatment – it means you’ve got another chance to try and regain your remission and stop your non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma affecting you so much.

Finding support if you have non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Starting treatment for NHL again can be a challenging time, and it’s important to remember that there’s plenty of support out there for you, should you need it. Patient support groups can be a very valuable source of information and advice, and can help you get in touch with people who are in the same situation. Here at Lymphoma Life you can find the contact details of organisations in your country that could help you.

Find out about non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma support organisations

Treatments and outcomes in relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Now your aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma has relapsed, you’ll need more treatment to keep it under control. Here at Lymphoma Life we discuss the different kinds of treatment that you may receive at this stage.

Find out what you can expect from treatment for relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Preparing for treatment visits for relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Although you’ll have visited the hospital, lymphoma clinic or doctor’s office for treatment before for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, returning for more treatment once you’ve relapsed can still be quite daunting. It may also have been some time since your last treatment visit. Here at Lymphoma Life you can remind yourself about some of the things you need to think about to make treatment visits easier.

Find out about preparing for treatment visits for relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Living with relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

You might find that you’ll need to make a few lifestyle changes to help yourself cope with living with relapsed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Everyone is different, so it is important to listen to your body and only attempt what you feel you can cope with.

Read our advice about living with relapsed aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Remind me about aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Although aggressive NHL is now a part of your life, it may have been some time since you’ve experienced symptoms and had to really think about the disease. These pages act as a quick reminder about the details of NHL. You’ll also be able to find many links to other parts of Lymphoma Life that give you more information about NHL in general.

Read this quick summary about aggressive non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

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