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Hodgkin lymphoma

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Survival statistics for Hodgkin lymphoma

Survival statistics for Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) are very general estimates and must be interpreted very carefully. Because these statistics are based on the experience of groups of people, they cannot be used to predict a particular person’s chances of survival.

There are many different ways to measure and report cancer survival statistics. Your doctor can explain the statistics for HL and what they mean to you.

Relative survival

Relative survival looks at how likely people with cancer are to survive after their diagnosis compared to people in the general population who do not have cancer, but who share similar characteristics (such as age and sex).

In Canada, a 5-year relative survival statistic is reported for HL. The 5-year relative survival for HL is 85%. This means that, on average, people diagnosed with HL are 85% as likely to live 5 years after their diagnosis as people in the general population.

Survival by stage

Survival varies with each stage of HL. The following factors can also affect survival for HL.

  • Generally, the earlier HL is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome.
  • Low tumour bulk results in a better outcome.
  • The absence of B symptoms results in a better outcome.
  • Overall, HL is very responsive to treatment.

Hodgkin lymphoma survival
Stage5-year relative survival

I

>90%

II

>90%

III

about 80%

IV

about 65%

The International Prognostic Factors Project (IPFP) has developed an international prognostic score (IPS) for advanced disease (stage III and IV) based on adverse risk factors that are present at the time of diagnosis.

  • 60% to 80% of people with advanced favourable disease (0–3 adverse risk factors) are relapse-free (cancer has not come back) 5 years after treatment.
  • 42% to 51% of people with advanced unfavourable disease (4 or more adverse risk factors) are relapse-free 5 years after treatment.

Questions about survival

People with cancer should talk to their doctor about their prognosis. Prognosis depends on many factors, including:

  • a person’s medical history
  • type of cancer
  • stage
  • characteristics of the cancer
  • treatments chosen
  • response to treatment

Only a doctor familiar with these factors can put all of this information together with survival statistics to arrive at a prognosis.

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