Dr. Tycel Phillips reviews how follicular lymphoma patients are monitored during remission, including frequency of office visits.
Dr. Tycel Jovelle Phillips is a Medical Oncologist in the Hematology Clinic at The University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center. Learn more about Dr. Phillips, here.
If someone receives treatment and then goes into remission, how are they monitored?
So, there’s a couple of different ways you can go about it.
Historically, what we would do is we would actually sometimes get CAT scans. But we’ve sort of pulled back from that in recent years. So, as of right now, the recommendation is really just clinical observation, meaning what I call well baby visits. Meaning I will see you in clinic at least every three months for the first year after completion of therapy. We do a system assessment, we’ll do a physical exam, we’ll do labs. Unless there is really something that at the completion of therapy that I’m concerned about, we won’t typically do any imaging.
We reserve imaging until there is a concern at some point, whether you have symptoms, there’s a lab issue, or there’s some other finding that comes up that means that we have to repeat pictures. So those visits I’ll do typically every three months for the first year, spaced out that every four months for the second year, post treatment. And then every six months up until about year four. And then it’ll become a yearly visit thereafter, as long as you continue to remain well without symptoms and nothing on an exam that’s concerning.