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Leuk Lymphoma. 2000 Jun;38(1-2):121-30.

B-cell lymphoma-associated hemophagocytic syndrome.

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Second Department of Medicine, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Kamigyoku, Japan.


B-cell lymphoma-associated hemophagocytic syndrome (B-LAHS) is extremely rare in Western countries but has recently been increasingly reported in Asian countries, especially Japan. Here, we reviewed 25 previously reported Japanese cases of B-LAHS and summarized its clinicopathologic features and therapeutic outcome. The median age of onset was 63 years old with initial presentation of fever, hepatomegaly, and splenomegaly without associated lymphadenopathy. Laboratory findings showed increased levels of lactate dehydrogenase, C-reactive protein, ferritin and soluble interleukin-2 receptor. Histopathologically, hemophagocytosis was often seen in the bone marrow and spleen. Various percentages of lymphoma cells were seen in the bone marrow, positive for CD19, CD20 and surface immunoglobulin. and some were also positive for CD5. Cytogenetic analysis showed a complex structural abnormality including chromosome 14q32, 19q13 and deletion of the terminal part of 8p21. Some patients had histological features of intravascular lymphomatosis (IVL). The prognosis was poor with a median survival period of 9 months. We treated five patients using autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation (PBSCT), and four are still in complete remission nine to 24 months after PBSCT, suggesting that high-dose chemotherapy followed by PBSCT might improve the survival rate.

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