What Happens During Radiation Therapy for Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

If you’re having treatment directed at just a small part of your body, you’ll probably be able to have radiation as an outpatient. That means you can have it done at a hospital or clinic without having to spend the night. If you’re preparing for a stem cell transplant, you will have the treatments as an inpatient, which means you’ll have to stay in the hospital.

You get radiation in one of two ways.

  • External radiation from a machine outside the body, which is the most common type of radiation used for lymphoma

  • Internal radiation where radioactive material is placed inside you, directly into or near the tumor

You will talk with a doctor who specializes in both lymphoma and radiation, called a radiation oncologist. This doctor determines the type of radiation you need, the dose, and the treatment length. During your visit, ask what you can expect to feel during and after the treatment.