Though rare, certain types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma may be treated with surgery. This may be the case when the cancer is localized to an organ and has not spread, or if other treatment methods fail. Examples include:

  • Removing tumors from the stomach in those with gastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma.
  • Splenectomy in those with splenic marginal zone lymphoma. It is possible to live without a spleen, but it increases the risk of certain bacterial infections such as pneumonia. Extra protection against some infections can be attained with vaccines and lifestyle changes.

Surgery is usually done in combination with other treatments.

REFERENCES:

Adult non-Hodgkin lymphoma treatment (PDQ)—patient version. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: https://www.cancer.gov/types/lymphoma/patient/adult-nhl-treatment-pdq. Accessed January 28, 2021.

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T116014/Non-Hodgkin-lymphoma-NHL. Accessed January 28, 2021.

Surgery for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. American Cancer Society website. Available at: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/non-hodgkin-lymphoma/treating/surgery.html . Accessed January 28, 2021.

Last reviewed December 2020 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Mohei Abouzied, MD, FACP  Last Updated: 1/28/2021