Recovery & Support for Hodgkin Lymphoma in Children
At the Stephen D. Hassenfeld Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, part of Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone, our pediatric oncologists, radiation oncologists, pediatric psychologists, nurses, and wellness experts, who specialize in integrative therapies such as music therapy and massage therapy, can provide your child and family with psychosocial assistance during treatment and recovery. Programs offered through our Sala Institute for Child and Family Centered Care can help you and your family navigate the treatment process.
Children with fatigue, weakness, or other side effects from chemotherapy drugs or radiation therapy have access to our rehabilitation experts at the nationally renowned Rusk Rehabilitation. Rehabilitation treatments for childhood Hodgkin lymphoma can include pain management, physical therapy, and psychological therapy.
Specialists at the Stephen D. Hassenfeld Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders offer daily wellness programs for children or teens, their siblings, and their parents. These programs include art, music, and pet therapy; massage therapy; psychological services; sibling, teen, and young adult support groups; and yoga, among others.
Our medical librarians, social workers, and therapists work with your family throughout treatment and recovery, offering information and support.
A small percentage of children who achieve remission after treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma experience a recurrence. Our oncologists recommend close monitoring in the first five years after completing the therapy, followed by annual checkups.
This can include blood tests, chest X-rays, CT scans, or PET scans. Your doctor will recommend a follow-up care schedule that’s right for your child.
Treatment for Hodgkin Lymphoma Relapse
If relapse does occur, your child’s oncologist will create a treatment plan, which may include high-dose chemotherapy followed by stem cell transplantation. During this procedure, cancerous cells are destroyed with high-dose chemotherapy delivered through a vein with intravenous (IV) infusion in the hospital over a period of days. They are then replaced with healthy stem cells from your child’s own blood, which was collected before the high-dose chemotherapy, or from a donor. The donor is typically a sibling or other family member, or an unrelated person found to be a good “match,” meaning he or she has similar blood and tissue types.
Some children may be given a targeted chemotherapy medication known as antibody–drug conjugates. This drug works by pairing an antibody—a protein produced by the immune system when the body detects a harmful substance—with an anticancer drug, which doesn’t start working until the antibody delivers it to the cancer cells. This targeted approach is less toxic to healthy cells than traditional chemotherapy drugs used for Hodgkin lymphoma.
Clinical trials may offer new treatment options for relapsed childhood Hodgkin lymphoma. NYU Langone is a member of the Children’s Oncology Group, a National Cancer Institute–supported organization that unites experts from around the world to test new treatments for childhood cancers.
Doctors at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone are also founding members of the Therapeutic Advances in Childhood Leukemia and Lymphoma (TACL) consortium, a group of children’s hospitals and universities that brings new therapies into clinical trials for children with Hodgkin lymphoma.
Your doctor can help you decide if participating in a clinical trial is right for your child.