In most cases, people diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma don't have any obvious risk factors, and many people who have risk factors for the disease never develop it. Some factors that may increase the risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma include:
Jan. 23, 2015
- Medications that suppress your immune system. If you've had an organ transplant, you're more susceptible because immunosuppressive therapy has reduced your body's ability to fight off new illnesses.
- Infection with certain viruses and bacteria. Certain viral and bacterial infections appear to increase the risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Viruses linked to increased non-Hodgkin's lymphoma risk include HIV and Epstein-Barr virus. Bacteria linked to an increased risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma include the ulcer-causing Helicobacter pylori.
- Chemicals. Certain chemicals, such as those used to kill insects and weeds, may increase your risk of developing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. More research is needed to understand the possible link between pesticides and the development of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
- Older age. Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma can occur at any age, but the risk increases with age. It's most common in people in their 60s or older.
- Non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed Dec. 10, 2014.
- Hoffman R, et al. Hematology: Basic Principles and Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2013. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Dec. 10, 2014.
- Non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. http://www.lls.org/resourcecenter/freeeducationmaterials/lymphoma/nonhodgkin. Accessed Dec. 10, 2014.
- What you need to know about non-Hodgkin lymphoma. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/publications/patient-education/wyntk-non-hodgkin-lymphoma. Accessed Dec. 10, 2014.
- Taking time: Support for people with cancer. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/publications/patient-education/taking-time. Accessed Dec. 10, 2014.
- Lymphoma SPOREs. National Cancer Institute. http://trp.cancer.gov/spores/lymphoma.htm. Accessed Dec. 10, 2014.
- Cook AJ. Decision Support System. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 13, 2014.
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