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Ann Thorac Surg. 2000 Apr;69(4):993-7.

Primary non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of the lung.

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Department of Surgery, Mayo Clinic and Foundation, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.



Primary non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of the lung is a rare entity. Although the prognosis is favorable, clinical features, prognostic factors, and patient management have not been clearly defined.


We reviewed retrospectively the records of 48 patients operated on for primary pulmonary non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The study group consisted of 21 male (44%) and 27 female (56%) patients with a mean age of 61.8 years. Thirty-seven and a half percent of patients were asymptomatic, and 62.5% were seen with pulmonary symptoms, systemic symptoms, or both. A definitive diagnosis was obtained by thoracotomy in 90% of patients, thoracoscopy in 8%, and anterior mediastinotomy in 2%.


Complete surgical resection was possible in 19 patients (40%). A mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue lymphoma (MALT) was found in 35 patients and lymphoma that was not of this type, in 13. The 1-year, 5-year, and 10-year survival rates were 91%, 68%, and 53%, respectively in the group with mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue lymphoma and 85%, 65%, and 64% in the group with lymphoma that was not of the mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue type. None of the prognostic factors studied (mode of presentation, smoking history, bilateral disease, postoperative stage, complete resection, adjuvant chemotherapy, histology) significantly influenced patient survival.


Primary non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of the lung occurs with nonspecific clinical features. Although patient survival is good, prognostic factors could not be identified.

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