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Arch Pathol Lab Med. 1988 Nov;112(11):1145-50.

Dermatopathic lymphadenitis. The spectrum and significance of its morphologic features.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital, FL.


The lymph nodes from 50 axillary node dissections were evaluated by light microscopy and immunohistochemistry for the presence of dermatopathic lymphadenitis-like histologic features. On the basis of hematoxylin-eosin-stained sections alone, a histologic continuum was observed ranging from minimal paracortical changes to fully developed dermatopathic lymphadenitis. Twenty-three lymph node biopsies previously interpreted as diagnostic of dermatopathic lymphadenitis were reviewed. Only nine of these showed the fully developed dermatopathic lymphadenitis. Only one of these patients had a dermatitis. Our conclusions are that the presence of dermatopathic lymphadenitis does not mean that the patient has concomitant skin disease, and that axillary lymph nodes from patients without skin disease manifest a spectrum of dermatopathic lymphadenitis-like histologic features. Dermatopathic lymphadenitis may represent one end of a normally occurring histologic spectrum that may be found in the absence of a dermatitis.

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