The main difference between Hodgkins and Non-Hodgkins lymphoma is that in Hodgkins, a very special cell called the Reed-Sternberg cell, is present. If this cell is not present, then it is classified as Non-Hodgkins, where only abnormal B-cells are present.
Staging is based upon extent of node involvement: how many AND where the affected nodes are, and how far from the point-of-origin node. Also, the presence of other tumors and where they are with respect to the original tumor is a factor.
Because staging of this cancer is dependent upon numerous factors, there are a myriad of treatment options. If the cancer is slow-growing, a wait and see approach might be adopted. Radiation, Chemotherapy, stem cell transplant, and other therapies targeted specifically to the abnormal B-cells are also viable treatments.