Relapsed follicular B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Relapsed Follicular B-Cell Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma: A Closer Look

Relapsed follicular B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (FL) is a type of cancer that begins in a type of white blood cell called a lymphocyte. It affects a person’s immune system and can be life-threatening if left untreated. FL is classified as an indolent lymphoma, meaning it develops slowly and gradually gets worse over time if not managed properly. When FL recurs after treatment, it is known as relapsed FL.

Relapsed FL is not uncommon; about 10-30% of patients experience relapse within five years of completing treatment. Treatment options for relapsed FL can be challenging due to the nature of the disease, but there are several effective treatments available. Understanding the basics of this type of cancer is the first step in creating an effective treatment plan.


To diagnose relapsed FL, doctors may order a variety of tests, including a physical exam, blood tests, CT scans or PET scans, lymph node biopsy, and bone marrow biopsy. Tests such as positron emission tomography (PET) and computed tomography (CT) scans are used to identify if there are any areas where FL has spread. lymph node biopsy and bone marrow biopsy are done to determine the type of cancer cells present.

Treatment Options

Treatment options for relapsed FL vary depending on the patient’s age, overall health, and other factors, but there are several common therapies. These include:

  • Chemotherapy
  • Targeted therapy
  • Radiation therapy
  • Surgery
  • Immunotherapy

Chemotherapy is the most common treatment for relapsed FL. It involves the use of powerful drugs to kill cancer cells and stop them from spreading. Targeted therapies, such as monoclonal antibodies, can help target specific genes or proteins involved in the growth of cancer cells. Radiation therapy uses high-powered energy beams to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. In some cases, surgery may be used to remove tumors in the affected area. Lastly, immunotherapy uses the body’s own immune system to fight cancer cells.


Relapsed FL is a serious medical condition, but when caught early and treated correctly, it can be managed effectively. It is important for patients to work with their healthcare team to create an individualized treatment plan in order to get the best possible outcome.