The nationally recognized subspecialists at the OSUCCC – James believe the best way to treat patients and manage their disease successfully is to deliver the latest, most effective treatments available and to work with nationally and internationally renowned experts to develop the newest and best cutaneous lymphoma treatments and programs.

Because these renowned subspecialists understand that cutaneous lymphoma is a complex disease, they use the most effective means of treating patients through an expert team approach from across multiple medical disciplines. These teams also run groundbreaking studies, and through detailed observations, evaluate the latest treatments and targeted therapies.

The OSUCCC – James team of experts also analyzes the genetic and biological composition of each patient’s cancer to determine the best possible treatment, offering improved outcomes, faster responses and fewer side effects.

Treatment Options

The OSUCCC – James is a leader in offering some of the world’s most advanced and sophisticated, successful treatments for cutaneous lymphoma patients.

No cancer is routine, and the OSUCCC – James subspecialists base personalized treatment plans on many factors, including

  • The type of cutaneous lymphoma
  • The patient’s age and general health
  • The patient’s symptoms
  • The stage of the cancer

Some therapy treats the affected patches of skin, and other treatments are for the entire body, (these are called systemic therapy).

The OSUCCC – James team of experts will recommend one or more of the following treatments, based on your individual needs:

Photodynamic Therapy

Photodynamic therapy uses a special laser to activate a drug that kills cancer cells. The laser is aimed at the lymphoma patches after the drug is injected into the patient’s vein.


Chemotherapy uses drugs to destroy cancer cells or stop them from dividing. Some chemotherapy treatment for cutaneous lymphoma is topical, which means the drugs are mixed into a cream or ointment to be placed directly onto the affected skin patches of skin.

Some chemotherapy drugs can be taken by mouth or injected into a vein or muscle. When the drugs enter the bloodstream, they can reach cancer cells throughout the body (called systemic chemotherapy). Combination chemotherapy uses more than one anti-cancer drug.

Chemotherapy treatment usually takes place in an outpatient part of the hospital, at your doctor's office or in your home. Some people may need to stay in the hospital for treatment.


Immunotherapy, also called biologic therapy, boosts a patient's immune system to fight cancer. Substances made by the body or in a laboratory are used to direct or restore the body's natural defenses against cancer. Interferon is a type of immunotherapy used to treat cutaneous lymphoma.

Topical Drug Therapy

Chemotherapy and topical drugs can be applied directly to patches of cutaneous lymphoma. Topical steroids and retinoids, which are vitamin A compounds, also might be applied.

Targeted Therapy

At the OSUCCC – James, research experts are continually studying and developing new drugs to find and attack only cancer cells while sparing healthy cells, which results in fewer side effects than with other therapy.

Lymphoma Biomarker Testing

Patients with cutaneous lymphomas may receive monoclonal antibody therapy, which is a type of protein made in a laboratory. Monoclonal antibodies can stop cancer cell growth.

Other targeted therapies used to treat Sézary syndrome and mycosis fungoides can cause a chemical change in the cancer cells that stops them from dividing.

Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy uses high-energy X-rays or other radiation to kill cancer cells or keep them from growth. Patients can receive radiation treatment for single patches of cutaneous lymphoma, and those patients with Sézary syndrome and mycosis fungoides might have a special technique called total skin electron beam radiation therapy, which treats skin all over the body with rays of tiny electron particles.

The OSUCCC – James radiation oncologists are leaders in innovative radiation treatments, including conformal imaging-based radiation therapy, intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), total-body radiation therapy, total-skin electron beam therapy, stereotactic radiosurgery and using a Varian TrueBeam Linear Accelerator.

Stem Cell Transplant

Stem cell transplants enable patients to receive high doses of chemotherapy and radiation therapy, and then later, replace blood-forming cells that have been destroyed by cancer treatment.

Stem cells, which are immature blood cells, are removed from the blood or bone marrow of either the patient or a donor, and then they are frozen and stored. After chemotherapy is completed, the stored stem cells are thawed and given back to the patient through an infusion. These reinfused stem cells grow into and restore the body's blood cells.

If a stem cell transplant is needed, the OSUCCC – James has one of the most active, sophisticated programs in the entire nation.

Cutaneous Lymphoma Research & Clinical Trials

For lymphoma patients, clinical trials mean hope.

The OSUCCC – James has hundreds of open clinical trials at any given time, with some of the world’s latest discoveries available to clinical trial patients right here in Columbus, Ohio. In fact, patients have access to more cancer clinical trials here than at nearly any other hospital in the region as well as access to some of the most advanced, targeted treatments and drugs available.

Who Should Participate in a Clinical Trial?

Patients can enter clinical trials before, during or after starting their individual treatments.

The OSUCCC – James is one of only a few U.S. cancer centers funded by the National Cancer Institute to conduct phase I and phase II clinical trials on novel anticancer drugs. These trials go only to centers that demonstrate an exemplary capacity for research and clinical care, the expertise to deliver the latest in treatments, and the infrastructure to interpret and track treatment results.

If you’ve been diagnosed with cutaneous lymphoma, would like a second opinion or would like to speak with a lymphoma specialist, please call The James Line at 800-293-5066 or 614-293-5066 to make an appointment.

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The James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute

460 West 10th Avenue

Columbus, Ohio 43210

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