Non-Hodgkin lymphoma epidemiology and demographics

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Preeti Singh, M.B.B.S.[2]


In 2015, the incidence of non-Hodgkin lymphoma was estimated to be 24 cases per 100,000 individuals in the United States. In the United States, the age-adjusted prevalence of non-Hodgkin lymphoma is 131.1 per 100,000 individuals in 2011.

Epidemiology and Demographics

  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is the most common hematologic malignancy in the world.[1]
  • NHL ranks as the 7th most common cancer among males and the 6th most common cancer among females.[1]


  • The incidence/prevalence of non Hodgkin lymphoma is approximately 13.2 per 100,000 individuals worldwide.[1][2]

Mortality rate

  • Non Hodgkin lymphoma is the 6th most common cause of cancer related death in the world.[1]



  • Non Hodgkin lymphoma usually affects individuals of the Caucasian race.[4]
  • In the US, the relative risk (RR) of HIV-associated NHL in African-American is half that of Caucasians (RR 22.3, 95% CI, 17.1–29 vs. RR 46.2, 95% CI, 38.8–55) mainly due to ethnic variations in immune system regulatory genes.[5]


  • Men are more commonly affected by non Hodgkin lymphoma than women. The Male to female ratio is approximately 1.5:1 to 3:1.[6][7][8]


  • The majority of non Hodgkin lymphoma cases are reported in North America, Africa and East Asia.[9]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Anderson JR, Armitage JO, Weisenburger DD (1998). "Epidemiology of the non-Hodgkin's lymphomas: distributions of the major subtypes differ by geographic locations. Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma Classification Project". Ann Oncol. 9 (7): 717–20. PMID 9739436.
  2. Fisher SG, Fisher RI (2004). "The epidemiology of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma". Oncogene. 23 (38): 6524–34. doi:10.1038/sj.onc.1207843. PMID 15322522.
  3. Morton LM, Wang SS, Cozen W, Linet MS, Chatterjee N, Davis S; et al. (2008). "Etiologic heterogeneity among non-Hodgkin lymphoma subtypes". Blood. 112 (13): 5150–60. doi:10.1182/blood-2008-01-133587. PMC 2597610. PMID 18796628.
  4. Müller AM, Ihorst G, Mertelsmann R, Engelhardt M (2005). "Epidemiology of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL): trends, geographic distribution, and etiology". Ann Hematol. 84 (1): 1–12. doi:10.1007/s00277-004-0939-7. PMID 15480663.
  5. Koshiol J, Lam TK, Gridley G, Check D, Brown LM, Landgren O (2011). "Racial differences in chronic immune stimulatory conditions and risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in veterans from the United States". J Clin Oncol. 29 (4): 378–85. doi:10.1200/JCO.2010.30.1515. PMC 3058284. PMID 21172877.
  6. Morton LM, Wang SS, Devesa SS, Hartge P, Weisenburger DD, Linet MS (2006). "Lymphoma incidence patterns by WHO subtype in the United States, 1992-2001". Blood. 107 (1): 265–76. doi:10.1182/blood-2005-06-2508. PMC 1895348. PMID 16150940.
  7. Roman E, Smith AG (2011). "Epidemiology of lymphomas". Histopathology. 58 (1): 4–14. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2559.2010.03696.x. PMID 21261679.
  8. Ansell P, Simpson J, Lightfoot T, Smith A, Kane E, Howell D; et al. (2011). "Non-Hodgkin lymphoma and autoimmunity: does gender matter?". Int J Cancer. 129 (2): 460–6. doi:10.1002/ijc.25680. PMID 20853323.
  9. Swerdlow S, et al. WHO classification of tumours of haematopoietic and lymphoid tissues, vol. 4. Lyon; 2008. p. 439.