Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma Risk Factors

Most people who develop non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma have no known risk factors. Nonetheless, the following factors may increase your chance of developing this condition:

  • Sex: In general, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is more common in males than in women.
  • Age: The most common types of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma usually appear in people 60 to 70 years old.
  • Race: Overall, the risk is slightly higher in Caucasians than in African Americans and Asian Americans.
  • Chemical exposure: Overexposure to a number of industrial and agricultural chemicals (such as pesticides, herbicides and petrochemicals) has been frequently linked to an increased risk for lymphomas.
  • Autoimmune disorders: Patients with a history of autoimmune diseases, including HIV/AIDS, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematosusHashimoto's thyroiditis, Crohn's disease and Sjogren’s syndrome, are at an increased risk for certain non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
  • History of chemotherapy or radiation therapy 
  • Celiac disease (gluten enteropathy or gluten intolerance)
  • Obesity