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What is follicular lymphoma?

Follicular lymphoma is a type of non Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). Lymphomas are divided into Hodgkin lymphoma (also called Hodgkin's disease) and non Hodgkin lymphoma. Any lymphoma that is not called Hodgkin lymphoma is a type of NHL.

Follicular lymphoma is one of the most common types of non Hodgkin lymphoma. It is a type of B cell lymphoma. It is rare in young people. Follicular is classed as a low grade (indolent) lymphoma. It is called follicular because of the way the cells look under a microscope. They grow in a circular way. The low grade lymphomas tend to develop quite slowly, over a number of years. Sometimes no treatment is needed at first. Although they can be harder to get rid of completely than high grade lymphoma, they generally need less intensive treatment. They can often be kept under control for many years. Treatment for people with follicular lymphoma has improved significantly in recent years. There are many more treatments available nowadays that have fewer side effects and work better than the older treatments. 

There is a page about the different types of lymphoma in our non Hodgkin lymphoma section. There is also information about clinical trials to find out more about which treatments work best in people with follicular lymphoma. You can find out more in our clinical trials database, pick 'lymphoma' from the dropdown menu.

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Updated: 12 November 2012