Hodgkin's lymphoma: what is it, and can it be cured?

Written by: Dr David Wrench
Edited by: Conor Lynch

In one of today’s articles, Top Doctors takes a closer look at Hodgkin’s lymphoma, one of the less common types of lymphoma. Here to reveal how the condition affects one’s body, how it is treated, and what the early warning signs and symptoms are, is revered London-based consultant haematologist, Dr David Wrench.

What is Hodgkin’s lymphoma and how does it affect the body?

It is a type of cancer. It is one of the less common forms of lymphoma. It comes from our own immune protective cells. When these cells start to multiply in our body, they start to escape the normal checkpoint mechanisms that control our body’s growth.


Typically, the illness presents as a lump that a patient sees is not going away. This lump starts to get gradually bigger. We would encourage patients to seek medical attention if they notice a lump that doesn’t seem to be going away.


What causes Hodgkin’s lymphoma? Are some people more likely to develop it?

Most patients who get it are sadly unlucky. We don’t know why some patients suffer from it and others don’t. Some patients who have HIV are at a higher risk of developing Hodgkin’s lymphoma.


What are the early symptoms of the condition?

The most common symptom is a lump in the neck, armpit area, or even in their groin area. Other common symptoms include weight loss, night sweats, fever, and an itch all over the body.


Is it curable?

Yes, it is curable, for the vast majority of patients. Most patients are cured with one course of treatment.


How is Hodgkin’s lymphoma treated?

There are several classes of treatment. Most commonly, patients will receive some form of well-tolerated chemotherapy that is extremely effective. Typically, the course of treatment entails providing patients with medicines that help fight off side effects from this chemotherapy.


We assess the patients continuously to see how they are reacting to this chemotherapy treatment. Another mainstay of treatment is radiotherapy, which is also highly effective. 


Dr David Wrench is a highly regarded and skilled consultant haematologist who can help you greatly when it comes to treating Hodgkin’s lymphoma if you have been diagnosed with the illness. Book an appointment with him today via his Top Doctors profile.

By Dr David Wrench

Dr David Wrench is a highly-experienced, London-based consultant haematologist with expertise in all areas of his field, particularly in the diagnosis and treatment of blood cancers and lymphoma. His range of specialist knowledge includes lymphomas, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease, low blood count, anaemia, and lymphadenopathy

After completing his studies in medicine at Cambridge University, Dr Wrench specialised in haematology and received his training at numerous esteemed London hospitals. He attends private patients at London Bridge Hospital and at Guy's and St Thomas' Private Healthcare. As well as this, he has worked within the NHS at the Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust since 2012. For patients with lumps, masses, or similar potentially-cancerous symptoms, Dr Wrench has led a rapid access diagnostic service.  

In addition to his clinical work, Dr Wrench holds prestigious positions within esteemed organisations. He is the clinical lead for Teenage and Young Adult (TYA) cancer at Guy’s and St Thomas’ private health care, co-chair of the SELCA haemato-oncology group, and governance lead for clinical haematology. Additionally, he is a member of both the NCRI low grade lymphoma group and of the Blood Cancer UK Healthcare advisory panel. 

During his PhD at Barts Cancer Institute, Dr Wrench published lead scientific papers in lymphoma. His research interests involve novel therapies and the aggressive transformation of lymphoma, as well as haematological malignancies and the rapid diagnosis of lumps. He is driven to improve both the treatment and outcome of patients with lymphoma.  

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