Stem cell transplantation isn't recommended for initial treatment of patients who have Hodgkin lymphoma, but it can be used to treat patients in first relapse. Two types of stem cell transplantation can be used:
- Autologous stem cell transplantation, which uses your own stem cells.
- Allogeneic stem cell transplantation, which uses a matched donor's stem cells. Autologous transplantation poses less of a risk than allogeneic transplantation does to patients.
The effectiveness of therapies for newly diagnosed patients has reduced the need for stem cell transplantation. However, autologous stem cell transplantation may cure some patients whose Hodgkin lymphoma has returned after a period of no sign of the disease.
Researchers are studying in clinical trials both standard and reduced-intensity allogeneic stem cell transplantation to treat some Hodgkin lymphoma patients who have a matched donor.