High dose chemotherapy and stem-cell rescue (bone marrow transplantation) is used increasingly in the treatment of malignant disorder. Numerous trials have demonstrated the effectiveness of bone marrow transplantation in the treatment of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. However, there are many unanswered questions as to the role of high-dose therapy in certain subtypes of lymphoma, the timing of transplant, and even the type of transplant to perform. An attempt will be made to clarify many of these unanswered questions. The utilization of high-dose therapy for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is recommended for most patients who have relapsed after initial therapy. Transplantation in first remission is not recommended routinely. Allogeneic bone marrow transplantation should by reserved for individuals with poorly responding disease or in individuals with bone marrow involvement. The precise roles of purging and transplantation of individuals with low grade lymphoma are being investigated.