Can Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Be Reversed?

Can Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Be Reversed?

Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a very treatable cancer and if the treatment is successful, it can go into remission. This means that if the treatment administered works, cancer can become inactive and you can live a lymphoma free life thereafter. Several factors can cause Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, but it arises from an abnormal lymphocyte cell. Lymphocyte cells are white blood cells, which are part of the lymphatic system, responsible for fighting against harmful pathogens in the body. The abnormal cell then multiplies producing other abnormal cells which are deposited in the lymph glands. The lymph glands then swell up as the abnormal cells continue growing thus developing into cancer, which is the non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Dealing with these abnormal cells successively can reverse cancer by inhibiting further multiplication of the cells.

Treatments Aimed At Curing Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

The correct term to use when it comes to reversing Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is remission, instead of cure. This is practically because, despite cancer going into remission, it can relapse at some point in time. However, if a certain time threshold is passed and cancer has not resurfaced, then you can be considered cured of NHL. The first course of treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is chemotherapy (R-CHOP chemo regimen), which can be combined with radiotherapy. The treatment is repeated until there is no trace of cancerous lymphocyte cells in the body. This especially applies to high-grade non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas detected during the first stage of cancer. In cases where the lymphoma cannot be cured, then treatment to slow down the growth rate of lymphoma is given to control cancer. For low-grade non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas, they cannot be reversed because they already are growing at a slow rate and the standard treatment procedures will not tackle the cancerous cells.

Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma And Dichloroacetate (DCA)

As much as chemotherapy can fully reverse non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, it can have long-term side effects on the patient. Needless say, in some cases, cancer can come back, and chemotherapy would have to be repeated all over again. In developing new ways of dealing with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, the use of Dichloroacetate (DCA) was established. It functions by hindering aerobic glycolysis through inhibition of pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase (PDK). This decreases the likelihood of aerobic glycolysis, referred to as the Warburg Effect. Cancer cells often use the energy released from aerobic glycolysis, rather than glucose oxidation which is used by healthy cells.

So, Dichloroacetate (DCA) activates pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) which in turn reduces Warburg Effect, meaning cancer cells will not have the energy to boost their abnormal growth. It also helps reduce intracellular lactic acidosis, which arises from the high levels of PDH. Nonetheless, Dichloroacetate (DCA) also enhances the death of selective cancer cells (apoptosis), thus leading to shrinking of the lymphoma and lower risk of metastasizing.

The Reversal Steps With DCA

Dichloroacetate (DCA) has to be taken continuously to achieve the full benefits of the regimen treatment. For patients who have been successfully cured of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, recovered from cancer in about four months. Within two weeks of medication, symptoms such as night sweats, fever, and fatigue usually improve and in several weeks they have completely ceased. Enlarged lymph nodes start to shrink in a month and within the four-month period for complete remission, they are no longer palpable.

At the end of four months, all symptoms of NHL are no more, the body has regained energy, and one feels a new surge of well-being. There is also no trace of cancer and provided that the patient continues taking Dichloroacetate (DCA), it will not relapse.


Having survived cancer is a great achievement and it gives one peace of mind knowing that the chances of recurrence are close to null. Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma can be reversed using successive chemotherapy regime which is administered in cycles. However, due to the side effects of the treatment, patients are looking for alternative ways with lesser side effects. Use of Dichloroacetate (DCA) is an effective treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma which completely cures cancer without leaving traces of life-long health complications.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:November 8, 2018

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