In wake of Paul Allen passing, the difference between Hodgkin’s lymphoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

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SEATTLE -- Microsoft co-founder and owner of the Seattle Seahawks, Paul Allen died Monday, from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, according to Vulcan.

Allen was first diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in 1982.  He underwent treatment and radiation.  In 2009, he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and was treated.  In 2018, the cancer returned and Allen was undergoing treatment when he passed on October 15, 2018.

Many may be wondering about the difference between Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma are cancers that start in the lymphatic system, which is part of the body that protects you from germs and fights diseases.

Hodgkin's lymphoma is considered highly curable and has a higher survival rate.

Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, which is what Paul Allen had in the later years, is considered more common. It's split into subtypes and stages 1-4. There is slow-growing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and fast-growing or aggressive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

According to Seattle Children's Hospital, the difference between the two comes down to how they spread, affect the body, and respond to treatment.

While we don't know the specifics of the non-Hodgkin's lymphoma Paul Allen was battling, we do know he had the top doctors working on his case.

In the Pacific Northwest, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, along with Seattle Children's Hospital are among the numerous local healthcare groups at the forefront of developing new therapies and treatments for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. That research includes less toxic treatments, advancements in bone marrow transplantation, and finding ways to reduce radiation in therapy.

Doctors say non-Hodgkin's lymphoma can happen at any age, but the risk increases as people get older. It is more common in people over the age of 60.

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