Hodgkin lymphoma is a rare B-cell malignant neoplasm affecting approximately 9000 new patients annually. This disease represents approximately 11% of all lymphomas seen in the United States and comprises 2 discrete disease entities - classical Hodgkin lymphoma and nodular lymphocyte-predominant Hodgkin lymphoma. Within the subcategorization of classical Hodgkin lymphoma are defined subgroups: nodular sclerosis, mixed cellularity, lymphocyte depletion, and lymphocyte-rich Hodgkin lymphoma. Staging of this disease is essential for the choice of optimal therapy. Prognostic models to identify patients at high or low risk for recurrence have been developed, and these models, along with positron emission tomography, are used to provide optimal therapy. The initial treatment for patients with Hodgkin lymphoma is based on the histologic characteristics of the disease, the stage at presentation, and the presence or absence of prognostic factors associated with poor outcome. Patients with early-stage Hodgkin lymphoma commonly receive combined-modality therapies that include abbreviated courses of chemotherapy followed by involved-field radiation treatment. In contrast, patients with advanced-stage Hodgkin lymphoma commonly receive a more prolonged course of combination chemotherapy, with radiation therapy used only in selected cases. For patients with relapse or refractory disease, salvage chemotherapy followed by high-dose treatment and an autologous stem cell transplant is the standard of care. For patients who are ineligible for this therapy or those in whom high-dose therapy and autologous stem cell transplant have failed, treatment with brentuximab vedotin is a standard approach. Additional options include palliative chemotherapy, immune checkpoint inhibitors, nonmyeloablative allogeneic stem cell transplant, or participation in a clinical trial testing novel agents.
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