Lymphoma is a term used to describe a group of cancers that originate in the lymphatic system, which helps the body fight infection and disease. Specifically, lymphomas are derived from lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell).
Like other cancers, lymphomas arise when cells divide uncontrollably. Lymphomas generally start in lymph nodes, spleen, bone marrow or blood. As they grow unchecked, they begin to crowd, invade, and destroy lymphoid tissues. They can also metastasize (spread) to other organs such as the liver, lung, skin and brain.