Lymphoma is a collective diagnosis for more than 30 different types of cancer where the disease is located in the body's lymphatic system. Lymphoma consists of the main groups Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Subgroups of non-Hodgkin lymphoma include diffuse large B-cell lymphoma and mantle cell lymphoma.
The incidence of Hodgkin's lymphoma has been stable for the past 15 years and the prognosis is good, but older patients have considerably poorer survival than younger patients. The use of PET scans has most likely led to fewer patients in stage I and more patients in stage IV.
For most subtypes of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, the incidence has been stable over the past 15 years. Improved diagnostics, better chemotherapy regimens and use of antibodies (especially anti-CD20) have led to increased survival for all subgroups.
Medicines that are given, for example, after organ transplantation, weaken the immune system.
insections with viruses (Epstein Barr virus and HIV) and rare bacteria (Helicobacter pylori) may increase the risk of cancer.
diseases, such as arthritis and other autoimmune diseases.
Other factors that increase the risk of lymphoma are earlier lymphoma diagnosis, and in some cases the disease is related to inheritance.
A total of 702 men and 533 women contracted Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma in Norway in 2022. The number of cases per 100,000 is 24 for men and 17 for women.
The median age (both sexes) for non-Hodgkin lymphoma is 70 years and for Hodgkin lymphoma 44 years.
The figure shows survival for Hodgkin lymphoma by age group for both sexes. From figure 8.1-V in Cancer in Norway 2022.
Five-year relative survival for Hodgkin lymphoma is 90.7 percent for men and 88.4 percent for women. Older patients have significantly poorer survival than younger patients.
The figure shows survival for non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) by age group for both sexes. From figure 8.1-W in Cancer in Norway 2022
Five-year relative survival for non-Hodgkin lymphoma is 77.3 percent for men and 81.3 percent for women.
Improved diagnostics, better chemotherapy regimens and use of antibodies (especially anti-CD20) have led to increased survival for all subtypes of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Survivors with lymphoma
As of 12/31/2022, there are 3,250 people who have or have had Hodgkin's lymphoma and 11,824 who have or have had non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Number of deaths
In 2021, 10 men and 11 women died from Hodgkin's lymphoma, while 164 men and 126 women died from non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Development over time
Prevalence and survival of Hodgkin lymphoma in the period 2002-2022, from Fig. 3.1 in the Annual Report on Lymphoid Malignancies 2022
There is a relatively stable incidence during this period, i.e. the number of new cases of Hodgkin's lymphoma has been stable since 2002. Per 100,000 person-years (per 100,000 people per year), there are approximately 2.5 people diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma. Relative survival is stable to slightly increasing, and no major changes have been made in the treatment of this disease group since 2003.
The advisory board in the Norwegian Registry of Lymphoid Malignancies has set a goal that relative survival after five years for Hodgkin lymphoma as a whole should be 85 per cent or more. For 2022, this figure is 89.1 per cent and thus well within the target.
Prevalence and relative survival of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in the period 2002-2022, from Fig. 3.9 in the Annual Report on Lymphoid Malignancies 2022 (Norwegian only)
Here we see a positive trend where relative survival is increasing. This means that those patients who get non-Hodgkin lymphoma live longer after cancer diagnosis. It is likely that the correct treatment for the correct diagnostic group, due to improved diagnostics, has contributed to the positive survival rate.
The number of new cases of non-Hodgkin lymphoma has been increasing for many years, but in recent years it seems to be stabilizing. There are around 20 people out of 100,000 who are diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma each year.
National Registry of Lymphoid Malignancies
The Norwegian Lymphoid Malignant Registry was granted national status in 2013. The Cancer Registry of Norway is responsible for data processing and works together with the professional community to develop the registry. The purpose of the quality registry is to contribute to strengthening the quality of the health care provided to patients with lymphoma and blood cancer.
Example results from the Annual Report on Lymphoid Malignancies 2022:
Division into the correct subgroup of non-Hodgkin lymphoma is very important because the groups should have different treatment and have different prognosis. Within this main group there are about 60 different subgroups.
The primary examination is therefore crucial for the entire further course of the patient, and if the diagnosis is not correct, the error can follow throughout
Treatment. The figure below seeks to elucidate whether the guidelines for diagnostics and package pathways for lymphomas are being followed.
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma diagnosis outside, and without consultation with university hospitals in 2020, 2021 and 2022 distributed by hospital. From Fig. 3.5 in the Annual Report on Lymphoid Malignancies 2022
The figure shows which hospitals do not always follow the consultation guidelines. The local hospitals where all patients have had their diagnosis confirmed at a university hospital or have treated fewer than 10 patients are not shown in the figure, but they are included in the column for the entire Norway. For the first time, the national target that more than 95 per cent of lymphoma patients should be diagnosed with a consultation at a university hospital has been reached.
A similar analysis was presented in the annual reports for 2016-2021. It is worth noting that for both Førde and Molde hospitals, only one patient is reflected in the analysis (due to the small number of patients).
Steps you can take to reduce your risk of getting lymphoma
Avoid exposure to chemicals in the workplace, such as solvents, dyes and pesticides. These may increase the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Avoid smoking and keep a healthy body weight. Obesity increases the risk of Hodgkin lymphoma.
Questions about cancer
The Cancer Registry of Norway is a research institution. Our professionals therefore do not answer questions about diagnosis, assessment, treatment and follow-up from patients or their relatives.
Questions about this should be directed to your own GP, treating institution or the Cancer Society Advisory Service tel: 21 49