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In the 19th and 20th centuries the affliction was called Hodgkin's Disease, as it was discovered by Thomas Hodgkin in 1832. Colloquially, lymphoma is broadly categorized as Hodgkin's lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (all other types of lymphoma). Scientific classification of the types of lymphoma is more detailed.
Although older classifications referred to histiocytic lymphomas, these are recognized in newer classifications as of B, T or NK cell lineage. Histiocytic malignancies are rare and are classified as sarcomas.
According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, lymphomas account for about five percent of all cases of cancer in the United States, and Hodgkin's lymphoma in particular accounts for less than one percent of all cases of cancer in the United States.
Because the lymphatic system is part of the body's immune system, patients with a weakened immune system, such as from HIV infection or from certain drugs or medication, also have a higher incidence of lymphoma.
The WHO Classification is the latest classification of lymphoma, published by the World Health Organization in 2001. It was based upon the "Revised European-American Lymphoma classification" (REAL).
This classification attempts to classify lymphomas by cell type, i.e. the normal cell type that most closely resembles the tumor. They are classified in three large groups: the B cell tumors, the T cell and natural killer cell tumors, Hodgkin lymphoma, and other less common groups: (ICD-O codes are provided where available).
Mature B cell neoplasms
Mature T cell and natural killer (NK) cell neoplasms
Immunodeficiency-associated lymphoproliferative disorders
The Working Formulation, published in 1982, is primarily descriptive. It is still occasionally used, but has been superseded by the WHO classification, above.
Other classification systems
Diagnosis, etiology, staging, prognosis, and treatment
Enteropathy associated T-cell lymphoma (EATL) is environmentally induced as a result of the consumption of Triticeae glutens. In gluten sensitive individuals with EATL 68% are homozygotes of the DQB1*02 subtype at the HLA-DQB1 locus (serotype DQ2). (See Coeliac Disease, HLA-DQ, HLA DR3-DQ2)
- Lymphoma Research Foundation
- MedlinePlus: Lymphoma
- ICD10 classification of lymphoma
- About Lymphoma: A guide to lymphoma for patients
- "Pathology and Genetics of Tumours of Haemopoietic and Lymphoid Tissues"
- Lymphomas in Children and Adolescents The Centre for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Sydney Children’s Hospital provides information on cancers in children and adolescents, including Hodgkins Disease and Non-Hodgkins lymphomas.
- Summary at NIH/National Cancer Institute
- Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma Symptoms & Support Information
Societies and Support Groups
- The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
- A Lot of Life! Positive Stories from a Survivor at Large
- Lymphoma Support Groups
- Lymphoma Support Ireland - Booklets & Patient Stories online
- Support Group web site for the Coventry Lymphoma Association Support Group in the UK
- US Lymphoma Fact Sheet from the American Cancer Society
- UK Hodgkin Lymphoma Statistics
- UK Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Statistics
- About Lymphomas - Patients Against Lymphoma
- Timeline of discovery and treatment of Hodgkin's Lymphoma
- National Cancer Institute. "Risk of Lymphoma Increases with Hepatitis C Virus Infection", May 2007.