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Watchful Waiting (Surveillance) for Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma

Table of Contents

Treatment Overview

Watchful waiting (surveillance) is a period in the treatment of some types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) in which you are not having treatment. It does not mean that your doctors are giving up or refusing to give you treatment.

What To Expect

During this time, you will:

Why It Is Done

Watchful waiting may be an option for you if:

How Well It Works

Watchful waiting is often as effective as other treatments for some types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). Some people with slow-growing NHL may live a long time without symptoms.

Risks

There do not seem to be any risks involved in watchful waiting for some types of NHL when you are being watched closely by your doctor. If your lymphoma changes, other treatments such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy may be used to control your disease.

What To Think About

Watchful waiting may be a good option if your lymphoma is not the type that can be cured with standard therapy, you are not having troublesome symptoms, and standard therapy is not likely to prolong your life.

Watchful waiting ends when one of the following occurs:

Credits for Watchful Waiting (Surveillance) for Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma

Current as of: August 21, 2019

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Anne C. Poinier MD - Internal Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Douglas A. Stewart MD - Medical Oncology


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The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.